The era of folding phones has officially begun. Samsung introduces the world to its companiesthis week, the rumored device will be called the Galaxy X or Galaxy F. This is not a typical announcement with every detail on display because they are for the Galaxy S9 or opening. Instead, Samsung tempts its folding phone through short videos and by lifting a high-working prototype in the hands of an executive on stage.
Even though Samsung has never displayed a foldable cellphone up close – even behind a museum glass – this device is real. This is quite conceptualized to get Google support. In fact, the Samsung project seems to have spurredfor all phones that can be folded, no matter the manufacturer. Meanwhile, Samsung gathered developers in a Wednesday afternoon session to share some more details, such as the telephone .
Despite dribs and information drabs, a short display on this folding telephone stage. This is what we know – and what is still coming.
What is the telephone call?
Samsung does not give the name of a foldable cellphone, but rumors suggest that it will be called the Galaxy X or Galaxy F. The "F" can stand for "fold" or "flex". "X" might mean "extra" or "10", because there are 9 Galaxy S phones – although we hope to see the Galaxy S10 around March this year.
What is a cell phone that can be folded?
If we use Samsung's definition, a foldable cellphone is a device with a cellular connection (hence the "phone" section) that looks like a tablet when it's fully open and can close like your normal cellphone. The Samsung prototype has a tablet-like screen that closes inward like a book, but, another folding phone, has a folding screen outward, which means "screen" is outside. There is no single definition.
Didn't ZTE make folding phones?
ZTE Axon M last year was the initial version of a folding telephone that connected two separate mobile screens through the central hinge. Samsung folding phones (and Royole's FlexPai) seem to have a unibody display that folds at the midpoint. A magnet secures the FlexPai screen in a "closed" position.
We can credit Axon M by exploring new ways to use dual screen devices; Royole has adopted several of these, for example, reflecting the contents of both screens so that people on both sides of the table can watch the same video clip. ZTE can find second generation phones that can be folded (or "folded").
What are the benefits of a cell phone that can be folded?
There are two main advantages. First, a foldable cell phone can double your available screen space. For example, the Samsung model has a 4.5-inch screen that you will use when closed. Then the inside opens to the 7.3-inch screen. You can argue that you have the equivalent of three screens to use.
The larger screen gives you a wider viewing surface, but also opens up different ways to use your device. For example, the Samsung folding screen will allow you to do multitasking in three areas at once. ZTE Axon M allows you to use the entire screen for one application, load separate applications on each screen, or reflect the same application on both screens.
What happens when you open and close Samsung phones when you use the application?
Like the Royole FlexPai, this folding phone will automatically transfer the application or screen you are looking for in a "closed" position that folds to an "open" position, and vice versa. We noticed a few lags here on FlexPai, but haven't had the chance to see how Samsung will handle the transition.
What's great about the look of Samsung?
Samsung makes a new look for its folding phone, Infinity Flex Display. The company said that they had to modify the regular layer which is part of any display (this is what turns on the "screen" you see on the cellphone). All displays are made of layers, but are usually stacked and do not move. The Infinity Flex Display uses a new adhesive developed by Samsung to laminate the screen so that they can flex and fold hundreds of thousands of times.
Companies also need to make Infinity Flex Display thinner than other cellphone screens. This cuts the thickness of the polarizer layer, which helps make the screen legible, by 45 percent.
When will Samsung folding phones be sold?
Samsung said it would start producing mass phones in "the coming month." Foldable phones are likely to go on sale in 2019. We expect Samsung to hold a separate launch event to introduce the details. Again, this is just a peek.
How much does it cost?
The short answer is we don't know because Samsung hasn't announced it yet. However, it's easy to guess that this will be an expensive device. The Royole FlexPai folding phone for developers costs $ 1,318 for devices with 6GB of RAM and 128GB of internal storage. The version with 8GB of RAM and 256GB of storage is valid for $ 1,469.
Because the Samsung Galaxy Note 9 for power users starts at $ 999, it's a fair guess that cutting-edge mobile phones will easily start at $ 1,500, if not more. We can expect devicemakers like Samsung (and Royole) to justify high prices based on total real estate screens. After all, they reasoned, you get tablets and cellphones in one – and the price of cellphones is only getting higher.
What is the battery life like?
Samsung aims to provide a folding phone battery life that can last as long as today's Galaxy smartphones, said Jisun Park, technical director and head of the system software group for Samsung's mobile business. That is despite the fact that there is a more active screen to drain the battery. The US version of Note 9 lasts for an average of 19 hours and 20 minutes inside.
Where I s fixed battery?
We don't have access to design details, but the battery isn't bent. Expect a large battery to sit on one side and many other components to balance it on the other side. One of the main complaints we have with ZTE Axon M is that it feels out of balance with half of the battery drastically thicker and heavier than the other half. Samsung must be careful for that.
What is the image of a foldable cellphone?
Almost certainly not. Samsung exhibited a prototype model, commenting that the real parts were hidden inside. Samsung is not ready for the public – or competitors – to see the final design.
If there is one breadcrumb that officially leaves us with a foldable form of cellphone, it is in the new One UI operating system. The company said that the rounded rectangular edge that formed the main design motif was intended to match the round edge of the device. The folding telephone prototype has a 90 degree angle and a thick bezel. We can anticipate a softer appearance.
What device is made of?
Materials are a big problem because buyers have been conditioned to spend more on aluminum, ceramics and glass. But FlexPai uses plastic screens and bodies to achieve flexibility and keep costs checked, and ZTE Axon M trades below the quality of cameras and other parts to keep it affordable.
It is possible that a foldable cellphone will have at least one plastic screen. When CNET asked, Samsung Park suggested during a session for developers that exterior screens might have different materials at the top of the screen than interior screens. Our guess is that the 4.5-inch screen can be made from Gorilla Glass while the 7.3-inch screen inside can be made of plastic.
Samsung did not respond to requests for comment.
How does it work?
In general, you will start using a foldable cellphone like your normal phone, and then open it when you want to take advantage of the larger screen space. Samsung doesn't share details about how hardware and software share messages.
Does this run on Android?
Yes, but there's more. Samsung announced that folding phones, and future calls, will run on a modified version of Samsung's custom software called Satu UI. Samsung made One UI beta available this month, but only for Android 9 Pie users. It is a fair bet that a foldable cellphone will be launched with Android Pie.
What applications will work on mobile?
It's still early, so we don't have a lot of details about the application. That's part of the reason Samsung launched the device at SDC, its developer conference: To get developers on board by supporting phones. Samsung's internal applications, such as SmartThings, might work on devices, and old Flipboard partners show off their initial efforts on the application.
Because the biggest benefit is the ability to multitask – run three applications at once or access more features in a particular application at once – the responsibility is for developers to create interesting applications that work smoothly on foldable phones. Samsung relies on application developers to help innovate as they do with applications that are compatible with the stylus for Galaxy Note.
When you open the device, does the smaller screen darken?
At this time, Samsung's design will "turn off" the 4.5-inch screen and open your application on a larger 7.3-inch interior screen, taking where you left off.
What is Samsung competition like?
Small at this time, but the future looks fierce. The ZTE Axon M clamshell is not the main competitor, and it is not the Royole FlexPai, although the Samsung beat to the screen is completely folded. But we know that LG and Huawei have their own plans for folding phones in the works. LG is rumored to be launching in early January at CES 2019.
Will Samsung sell displays that can be folded to other manufacturers?
During the SDC panel on Wednesday, developers asked when Samsung would sell its screen technology to rivals. He declined to comment on the possibility, but Samsung is one of the world's leading screen panel manufacturers. That possibility will eventually sell technology to competitors for use on their own devices.
Is this all real?
A cell phone that can be folded may feel like a pipe dream, but this is one fantasy that might really live. Questions remain about the price, practicality and convenience of using a foldable device.
What happens after being folded?
"Our innovation pipelines include screens that can be rolled and stretched," Denison of Samsung said Wednesday during the presentation.
CNET & # 39; s Shara Tibken contributed to this story.
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