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Here's why OnePlus hasn't made a foldable phone yet

OnePlus hasn't made a foldable phone yet and the company might have a very good reason for that.

Published onJanuary 15, 2020

TCL zigzag foldable phone prototype

OnePlus looked into foldable phones, but CEO Pete Lau is not a believer just yet. The Verge caught up with the OnePlus head on the sidelines of the OnePlus Concept One launch. In a podcast interview with the publication, Lau expressed that OnePlus hasn’t found significant value in making a foldable smartphone just yet.

He believes that the appeal of foldables is “outweighed by the shortcomings or the disadvantages of the current state of the technology.” Lau says he has qualms with the way creases appear on the displays of foldable phones such as the Samsung Galaxy Fold. Due to the plastic nature of current foldable displays, the screen can scratch easily and issues can occur at the point where the actual fold happens, Lau explains. “This isn’t something that I can accept in products that are built,” he adds.

Lau says that the technology needs to come to a level where display folds are crisp and don’t impact the potential usability of phones. He even shrugs off the redesigned Moto Razr. The executive says that even though it’s a different implementation, its display faces the same challenges as the Galaxy Fold.

Looks like Lau is not the only naysayer as far as current foldable smartphone tech is concerned. We’ve previously heard similar sentiments from LG executives. The company had confirmed it’s making a foldable phone in 2018, but later canned those plans in favor of optional dual-screen displays.

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The smartphone industry, though, looks pretty optimistic about the immediate future of foldable phones. Samsung and HUAWEI are almost nearing the launch of their second lot of foldable devices — Galaxy Z Flip and Mate XS. Players like Xiaomi and Oppo also seem to be working towards foldables. Moto, as we mentioned earlier, has also jumped in with the Razr.

Analysts predict foldable phones will remain niche till 2024, and from what we’ve seen so far, we kind of agree. What are your thoughts on foldable phones? Let us know in the comments section.

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