Open thread: Galaxy Round – hot or not?

by: Bogdan PetrovanOctober 9, 2013

samsung galaxy round flexible display curved screen (4)

Now that the dust has begun to settle around the Galaxy Round, we’re curious to hear your opinion on Samsung’s intriguing new phone.

The Round’s defining feature is the plastic-based display, the first of its kind to ship in a commercial product. By replacing the conventional glass substrate with a plastic substrate that can bend slightly, Samsung managed to create a phone that curves from side to side. It’s not what most of us expected from the technology, but it’s a first step on a path that we’ll one day lead us to bendable devices, foldable screens, and roll-out tablets.

The Full HD curved screen is the most interesting feature of the Galaxy Round, but the phone itself is pretty great. You get most of the specs of the Galaxy Note 3, save for the S Pen and the smaller battery. Samsung downgraded to a 2800 mAh curved battery that the video below suggests is manufactured by LG.

Samsung added a few software features to make that curved shape a bit more interesting, but there’s nothing to write home about. Roll Effect lets you check out the time, battery status, or notification by tilting the phone to a side, but we’re skeptical that many users will be blown away by this capability.

What’s your take on the Galaxy Round? Is it a disappointing gimmick  or an encouraging road opener? Do you see yourself using a phone like the Round? What would you choose between the Note 3 and the Round?

Tell us your opinion in the comments and vote in our polls.

[poll id=”386″]

  • Tim Stephens

    I’m somewhat intrigued by this.

  • Bone

    As per the 0.1mm thin, 5g light science fiction screen, oh my God it’s hot! It brings more durability, less reflections and drainage and overall thinner, lighter devices with bigger battery = SO MUCH WIN.

    As per it actually being curved… dunno if it will work, but I wanna try it out. One thing is for sure: it will fit a lot more nicely in the hand (and pocket and to the fact) than current flatback phablets, and from the right angle the curve will probably not be an issue.

    Then again, I absolutely wanna try it out.

    • prittjr

      agreed. things like how it rests in your pocket are also an intriguing aspect. The “roll effect” is nice to have, but seems a little slow for my taste. I might just prefer the constant breathing notifications from Moto X more.

  • Mike Newitt

    Oh yes!
    A rounded phone would fit the palm of my hand perfectly. Pity about the abcence of a pen.
    Good specs. This might very well be my next phone.

  • Brandito

    Samsung has done this twice already with the nexus and and the galaxy nexus, they just changed the axis of the curve and now the actual screen is curved as well.

    The durability of the screen is more interesting than it actually being curved, I think they’re going about this curved screen thing all wrong.

  • yama

    Display will catch light like a satelite! Fail and unneccessary.

  • Dexter

    Well in its current form it’s not really impressive, but i’m pretty sure that in other projects it could fit really well, think of the galaxy gear, or big curved monitors, even just for its durability, the possibilities this opens are big, but in its current form its not really intriguing

  • Ishaan Malhotra

    Whats the point of this?

  • Wolf Bogacz

    I’m somewhat disturbed by the lack of clearly sealed joints of the back case to the frame when viewed edge-on. This may be an imperfection introduced by the videographer. I hope it’s not in the final shipped product.

  • freedomspopular

    I think it’s getting far too much attention. It’s a Korea-exclusive device that will likely never be seen beyond Korea. Yeah, it’s the first of its kind, but does it really warrant the tech world going nuts?


    I’m really digging the attitude android authority has on this thread .. I am what you might call an avid apple fan but I do own a nexus 4 and come on here as a spectator ..whilst the galaxy nexus was descretely curved and offered a very immersive video experience .. This looks like a note that’s been left in the sun.. I am still pondering what the point of it is .. Ah well

  • cbstryker

    To everyone saying “what’s the point of this?” and “this is stupid”, etc.

    The point of this is that it’s new. This phone may never gain any significant amount of popularity, but the exploration of both the form factor and technology used for it is very important.

    Everyone said the Galaxy Note was too big when it was announced. Many said that no one would buy it. Sounds familiar.

    • Abdel Aziz Farhi

      New doesn’t necessarily mean good. if people don’t find this useful somehow it won’t make difference. The only reason i might buy this phone is if its less expensive than a Note 3. At least for now.

      • cbstryker

        I’m getting really sick of these forums. People don’t read what you write, then say the same thing and spin it as if to say you’re wrong.

        • mobilemann

          please, this is AA, and mostly kids post here.

          • Abdel Aziz Farhi

            Chill lol. its just my opinion about this phone, Clearly both of you don’t like it when people say things that you guys don’t approve. Well calling someone a kid is a typical answer from such people.. lol mobileman. you made my day brada.

        • Joshua Hill

          @mobilemann is an expert at that yet he agrees. Somehow I find that amusingly ironic.

  • Romeo Bucur

    I do see this device being created soly for bragging rights by Samsung… just to be the first ones with the curved display… using this form factor, i see 0 advantages for it, even more at that, i find it ugly (a matter of taste), and i would NEVER buy it. (on a personal note i have the Note 2 as my daily driver).
    I see the curved display as an oportunity to create something special, to let your mind be free, not to create a “melted” Note 3 and call it news.. No thanks.. Not for me !!!

  • Abdel Aziz Farhi

    Maybe a better screen since its stronger and more shatter proof comparing to regular AMOLED glass screens used on other devices. But the idea it self doesn’t make much sens. Having a curved screen on something as small as a smartphone won’t make any difference. It won’t have any effect on usage. Its not even as noticeable as we thought its gonna be. It can’t be anyways because it would make the phone look ugly.. Unlike curved TV and Computers monitors which give a good round effect that prevents occlusion effects and give better view angles.

  • Stephen Fronda

    I want a phone I can fold and twist if I want … where is that?

  • Lil bit

    Definitely NOT.
    But dont mind me I’m drunk, just that it was not hot earlier tonight when I was not drunk. It still sux. No no.

  • Lil bit

    I read the rewiews, not at all convinced, still going for the beauty, water proofness and the battery life of Sony sm2, the slightly reduced functionally is what I want to try out. Maybe after that I want more but I doubt it for now. The Sony has more advantages than disadvantages.

  • MRM

    It seems more of a novelty than a breakthrough. What I mean is that, while from an engineer’s point of view, this was likely quite a feat, in a practical sense from an average consumer, the benefits aren’t significant.

    Had they actually commercialized the concept they showed off, where the curved portion of the screen actually provide a definite, clear function (being able to see notifications and even news ticker on the side), or increased durability, THAT would have been a true breakthrough from a commercial sense.

  • rabidhunter

    In that form factor, I think it might be awkward for media consumption and playing games. It looks like it would be hard to hold in landscape mode or to lean it against something when viewing a message.

  • Pradaman Shorey

    I really don’t understand the need for this product,, I see that its HD plastic & curved, but how does that matter to anybody.. unless the user can fold and put it in the pocket easily, it does not make any sense.. curve does not mean ‘bendable devices, fold able screens, and roll-out tablets’, I agree its a start but there is no need of it..
    Its as good/bad as Note 3/Galaxy S4… Why will I buy this $1000+…
    Samsung should rather spend their money and resources on ironing out the issues in touch wiz, better battery & usability..
    Before this ‘Galaxy Gear’ was said to be a failure, not really sure what will we call ‘Galaxy Round’…
    “Galaxy Round smashed to the Ground”

  • Dusan

    To be honest I was expecting something else. When they said flexible and saw that LG picture I thought I can bend it.
    But this? No thanks, it makes reading web and playing games too awkward.

  • mrjayviper

    not really convince on the appeal of a curve screen. I have to see it for myself before deciding.

  • Amadeus Klein

    curved screens don’t really impress me, I am looking more at flexible tech for drop survivability and for the future of foldable devices which don’t require 2 discrete screens to function.. Oh, and power saving potential…

  • jhonybravo

    I would love to see Drop test on this.

  • Roberto Tomás

    What I really like about this tech is that it is, underneath it all, a cheap plastic display. They print these on rolls of plastic with a modified inkjet printer. They will one day be cheap, and not just cheap like a non-name LCD tv, but cheap like wallpaper.

    After these first few concept phones come out, and after the next set that are actually flexible that extend the shelf-life of those high prices, the prices will fall, rock-bottom. You’ll be able to get a phone like this, with an even better processor, in 2-3 years, for less than $100. You’ll be able to get a TV that is 55″, has better display characteristics, and is cheaper than a comparable LCD.

  • StorM

    Galaxy Round, not really to into the phone as I am into the possibilities the new screen provides. I can think of other devices that would put a curved screen to much better use…and trust me I am no knocking Samsung..I am a total Samsung runs the universe guy, but at the same time I think they should have took this technology to another type of device.

  • Joseph Teply

    I just wish Samsung would get rid of the home button. I just like the look of the nexus phone setup. I think this phone would feel good in the hand. I think the specs are good. I think this is the first steps to great products in the future for all companies, not just Samsung. But I guess people who don’t like the this product need to bitch and complain about it. Its the FIRST of it kind. Trial and error?

  • MSmith79

    If it can make a big phone feel smaller, without making it more difficult to use, then I think it’s a great innovation. I want the largest screen possible without it being awkward to hold in hand. The Note series I find awkward, but maybe this’ll solve that problem.

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