Samsung foldable displays: the rise of a new smartphone-and-tablet hybrid device

Flexible displays aren’t new. We first heard of foldable and scrollable displays somewhere in 2010. That’s 5 years ago. During an event called FPD 2010, Samsung displayed its foldable OLED display for TVs.

Flexible displays aren’t new. We first heard of foldable and scrollable displays somewhere in 2010. That’s 5 years ago. During an event called FPD 2010, Samsung displayed its foldable OLED display for TVs.

Back then, it claimed the display could deliver a full HD as well as 3D viewing experience. Fast forward to 2015, and the most popular product categories are mobile phones and tablets. The logical progression would be an implementation of the same technology to suit the compact form factors of smartphones and tablet devices.

According to a patent by Samsung, it’s working on a product category that implements a foldable display that would allow it to switch from a smartphone form factor to a tablet!

Samsung foldable displays: the rise of a new smartphone-and-tablet hybrid device

An image from the patent filed by Samsung. Image: USPTO

The first glimpse of this device was offered in a concept video

Two years ago, in 2013, Samsung also demoed a prototype Windows phone with a flexible OLED display at the international Consumer Electronics Show.

As per the patent, the device will have a smaller device that serves as a smartphone. When the device is opened, it reveals a larger display for a tablet. That is essentially the equivalent of a smartphone as well as tablet-sized display, or the displays of 3 smartphones.

Considering that displays cause the highest drain in battery charge, we wonder if consumers would prefer a device in this category. Factors such as battery life given the additional display would certainly dampen the excitement over this new product category involving foldable displays.

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