After years of behind the scenes iteration, Samsung will reportedly announce its first foldable smartphone later this year, according to a new report from the Korean Herald.
Citing “sources familiar with the matter,” the publication says Samsung will announce a smartphone in Q3 2017 that users will be able to fold out and use as a 7-inch tablet. The company will reportedly manufacture 100,000 units of this device.
The Korean Herald goes on to add Samsung may delay the launch of the device if the company feels it can’t make a profit on it, or if the device is not marketable. The company will make the final decision on whether to reveal the device to the public after it completes an executive reshuffle in February.
The report also notes LG will start manufacturing its own foldable displays, though in its case, the company is contemplating selling the technology to companies like Apple and Huawei rather than taking on the financial risk of marketing and selling the technology on its own.
While it seems Samsung has been poised to release a foldable smartphone for years, there’s good reason to believe 2017 may, in fact, be the year the company finally delivers on its promise. Gregory Lee, an executive with Samsung’s U.S. branch, told Recode foldable display smartphones were “right around the corner” at a tech conference this past summer. Just weeks before Lee made his statement, Bloomberg published a report that said Samsung would release two foldable display mobile devices in 2017, including an OLED tablet that can fold in half like a book.