We won’t have to wait much long to see the first set of bendable mobile devices hit the market, according to Gregory Lee, head of Samsung’s North American business.
“I think it’s relatively right around the corner,” he said at Rutberg’s Future:Mobile conference in Half Moon Bay, California. Lee went on to state Samsung has been iterating on prototype bendable displays for the past 10 years. “It just has been very difficult to manufacture at a reasonable cost.”
Lee’s comments come just a week after Bloomberg reported on Samsung’s plans to introduce two bendable screen devices at Mobile World Congress 2017. One of the devices is reportedly a tablet that can fold in half like a book, while the other is a 5-inch smartphone that can transform into an 8-inch tablet thanks to a rollable display. Samsung showed off a prototype of such a display at a recent conference.
Despite questions about their ultimate utility, bendable displays have become all the rage among the South Korean and Chinese OEMs.
Samsung’s in-country competitor, LG, secured a patent for a smartphone that can bend into a smartwatch last year. The conglomerate is also likewise expected to release its own pair of bendable mobile devices in 2017.
More recently, at its annual Tech World event in San Francisco, California, Lenovo showed off a variety bendable smartphone prototypes, including one working model. The Chinese company tapped YouTube star Megan McCarthy to demo the prototype, but did not announce when it plans to release a device that takes advantage of its bendable display technology.