According to a report from Korean news site ETNews, industry sources have revealed that prototypes for Samsung’s rumored foldable phone will make their way to MWC 2017.
Though we’ve seen foldable prototypes on display at such events before (like the Lenovo unit seen above), this year any revelations are going to be greeted with a little more interest as it’s expected that folding phones may go into production by the end of 2017, or early 2018.
While it would be cool these prototypes were on show, it’s said that the devices may only be visible to industry partners behind closed doors. Samsung has in the past revealed early versions of its products at tech events to receive private feedback before finalizing their design. In this case, Samsung may show off devices with both inward-facing and outward-facing displays.
ETNews speculated in December that two foldable Samsung prototypes would be developed in 2017 and that one would go into mass production. To quote from our previous coverage:
Samsung will apparently produce a small amount of dual-screened smartphones in early 2017 and assess the market’s response. This feedback will then be applied to two foldable designs the company is said to be working on and will go a long way towards determining when they are released.
If nothing else, ETNews’ reports have been consistent.
It has recently been suggested that the commercialization of folding display products relies partially on Samsung/LG parts supplier Kolon Industries. It’s speculated that its south Korea production lab, in which it will mass produce the polyimide film material needed in foldable displays, won’t be up and running until next January: meaning folding phones wouldn’t start shipping until sometime later.
What are your thoughts on the prospect of Samsung’s folding display devices? Let me know in the comments.