So much for your flexible display smartphone purchase plans, the Galaxy Round is just a test device

by: Adam KoueiderOctober 16, 2013

samsung galaxy round flexible display curved screen (3)

Despite the big hype that has been building across the internet and the race between LG and Samsung to bring the first flexible display smartphone to the market, the Samsung Galaxy Round and the LG G Flex, the initial response to this new breed of flexible displays can best be described as lukewarm.

But for those who are fans of the technology and are hoping to score themselves a Galaxy Round via a grey market import, this piece of news won’t be welcome.

Sammobile has stated via an inside source, that the Samsung Galaxy Round is a prototype test device which will only see a “limited” run. This means that your chances of getting your hands on the device are very low, and it also explains the high asking price of over $1000.

This isn’t the first time Samsung has launched a device to test a new piece of technology, but it’s probably attracted the most attention. Samsung has previously launched smartphones like the Samsung Galaxy S2 HD LTE, which was launched in South Korea to test HD (720P) Super AMOLED displays.

So what good news can we take out of this? Well this is just another step towards fully flexible display that can fold up and perhaps even roll up, in the next few years. Baby steps people, baby steps.

  • I just saw the new Samsung Galaxy Round last weekend at Sam’s Club and it’s almost as big as a Nexus 7 tablet. I believe it’s a 6.3 inch screen. Interesting device.

    • Amadeus Klein

      ? You sure it wasn’t the galaxy mega? The round is South Korea only and sams only has locations in the USA, China, Brazil, Mexico and Puerto Rico…. so likely not the round…. the round has a 5.7 inch screen like the note 3…

      • It could have been the Mega as there wasn’t anything special about it other it’s size of course, there is so many different Samsung Galaxy Smartphones it ridiculous. But that Smartphone was almost as big as my Nexus 7 (2012) screen wise.

        • MasterMuffin

          Dude, Galaxy Round is curved ಠ_ಠ

          • I said that I made a mistake above and mixed it up, relax dude.

          • MasterMuffin

            You said that it might have been Mega. I replied that Galaxy Round is curved… “Relax dude”

  • Dragonscourgex

    I find the prototype they showed off a while back, where the screen wrapped around the side of the device, would be a better starting point for flex screens

    • RanRu

      Wouldn’t your hand just hit things by accident all the time?

      • MasterMuffin

        That’s what clever software is for!

      • Dragonscourgex

        Like MasterMuffin said, they could use software to get around it. It could be setup to scroll information across it, when they have their a flip cover over the device or if the screen is off. If they use a AMOLED display, they can just turn on part of the screen to save on battery. Personally I find the current flat screen the best suited for smart phone displays. Such big curves shown off in the Round and Flex so far, can run the risk to be bothersome when they are in your pockets or if you trying to talk or work the phone. A slight curve like in the Galaxy Nexus is nice. But they manage that without a flexible screen. Now, having a phone that’s able to flip into a bigger screen, with no cracks, would be very nice. Have your normal 4.5″ to 5″ for normal use, then flipping it open to a ~10″ screen to watch videos and such.

        • RanRu

          I agree with you on most of that, but I question the usefulness of any curved display. Even as you described, it doesn’tseem to add any functionality that ccan’t be achieved with the windowed flip cases we have now. Seems like the tech is immature at the moment, but has a lot of promise for different applications.
          I’ll also mention the Kyocera Echo for kicks. It was like a low-tech, budget implementation of what you’re talking about.

          • Dragonscourgex

            Yea. I’m with you on the usefulness aspect. I still think a flat display is better suited for a mobile device. Now, one usefulness I can think of , is the increase in strength of a flexible display. So, even if you don’t bend the screen, maybe just using the display for the added strength would be worth it

    • Failbot

      AGREED. That being said, this curve to fit the hand is FAR superior to the curve to fit the face nonsense LG is trying…

  • Petethefish

    Looks like an s4 that has been left on a radiator too long! I can’t see any reason to buy one but I can understand it being a test device

    • MasterMuffin

      *Note 3 :)

      • Failbot

        Yeah, Note 3, this thing crushes the S4 in specs.

      • RanRu

        Honestly, it could *look* like any Galaxy from the last year and a half, considering Samsung’s design of late.

    • flipper

      yeah i dont see the point who wants a device that rolls around when you put it down?? however i can see the potential for advertising displays and the like

  • Ho Ku

    a limited release device is not the same thing as a “test device”. the title of the article is misleading, you should change it!

    • Failbot

      Agreed-ish. But sensationalism IS journalism these days.

    • Nathan Powell

      They’re testing the market for it, and this tech is far from being proven, how is this not a test?

  • RanRu

    Quietly waiting for a Fruit by the Foot phone.
    It’ll be… Phone by the Foot.

  • Bone

    If you can buy just one, it’s not a test device.

  • Ben Edwards

    So basically this is Samsung cheating to get the first ‘flexible’ display phone to the market.

  • trwb

    They found out that people wouldn’t buy this junk and then decided it was really just a prototype anyways

  • abazigal

    Translation – we admit we didn’t put any thought into designing this device and decided to just (ab)use clueless consumers as lab rats.

  • DMax

    bet they say that now due to the many bad responses for it