If you think smartphone screens are getting big, just wait. Samsung has outlined its roadmap for selling devices with foldable displays by the end of 2015, possibly leading to screens that open up to even larger displays than what is now available.
The roadmap was unveiled Wednesday at the company's Analyst Day in South Korea. A slide, part of a presentation by Samsung CEO Kwon Oh Hyun, showed that curved screens are coming sometime this year, as Samsung has already announced, with bendable screens starting in 2015 and extending into 2016.
Foldable screens emerge at the end of 2015, although the bar showing them emerges on the other side of starburst graphic that contains the words "technology barriers." No further detail is specified as to the barriers that still must be overcome.
A phone with a foldable screen could not only offer more display space than is currently available in smartphones, but could allow the phone to actually be carried more like a foldable wallet. It also raises the possibility of display screens on a variety of bendable or rounded surfaces that do not currently have screens, such as hats or clothing.
Foldable screens aren't the only wow-technology Samsung has in store for the near future. As early as next year, it intends to release devices with the highest commercially available high-definition resolutions, 4K or Ultra HD, at 3840x2160 pixels. Currently, the highest resolution smartphones are 1920x1080.
At the Las Vegas Consumer Electronics Show in January, Samsung showed a prototype smartphone that had a flexible display, constructed of a thin plastic that the company said was virtually unbreakable by dropping. The screen extended over the edge of the handset, so information could be read on the edge of the device. The prototype was primarily for proof-of-concept, not a complete device, and did not have a camera, operating system or all those other goodies that an actual product has.
The Curved Round
In early October, Samsung released a new Galaxy Round device that features a slightly curved, 5.7-inch Super-Flexible AMOLED screen with 1080p resolution. While groundbreaking, that device sells for the wallet-breaking price of about $1,000, and is currently available only in South Korea.
A curved screen, according to the company, makes one-hand use of the device more comfortable because it better fits the curve of a hand. Samsung has also developed some interactive techniques for one-handed control, such as a Roll Effect that displays notifications when the smartphone is tilted.
While various Samsung-watchers have pooh-poohed the curved screen in the Round as an unneeded attention-grabber with no added value, display testing and evaluation firm DisplayMate Technologies published a report last month that called curved screens "a major and very important new display technology innovation." It cited improved screen privacy because it's harder for other people to see screen content and a reduction in screen reflectance and glossiness.
Alex Of Frost:
Posted: 2013-11-18 @ 12:45pm PT
wow would so buy that.....