Samsung has hyped up the future of foldable phones for years, but at SDC 2018 we are finally one step closer. During its keynote, Samsung announced its new Samsung Infinity Flex Display technology. It also gave us a brief glimpse of a prototype that will be the basis for the 2019 commercial model.
The concept of a foldable phone is undeniably cool, but any first-generation product is bound to have some drawbacks. Here are just a few things to consider before you jump head first into the foldable hype train.
Samsung’s foldable phone is likely going to be a bit clunky.
Samsung was quick to point out that the prototype it showed off (in the dark) was masked to not give away design elements. This suggests it could be in some kind of a casing. Nonetheless, we wager this is going to be at least a little on the thick side.
Samsung’s foldable phone consists of a smaller cover display, a 7.3 inch tablet display, a battery, camera, and all the other components required for a modern smartphone. That’s a lot of stuff to pack in. It’s hard to say how much thicker or clunkier this will be compared to a standard phone, but it’s still something to keep in mind.
Two displays? This isn’t going to be cheap
Modern smartphones like the Galaxy Note 9 run right around $1000, which is not exactly cheap. Now add in a 7.3-inch tablet and a front cover display. Odds are this thing could easily cost $1200 to $1500, if not more.
On the plus side, you’re getting a tablet and a phone in one cutting-edge package. But it’s a 7.3-inch tablet. There’s a reason 7-inch tablets are less popular today, and that’s big screen phones.
A foldable phone isn’t going to be cheap.
The Note 9 is already 6.4-inches, so the Samsung foldable phone will be bigger but it’s certainly not large enough to replace a 10-inch tablet. This slightly diminishes the “2 devices in one argument”.
Is an inch more screen real-estate worth what could be a $400-$500 premium over devices like the Note 9? It depends on how much you value that extra space, as well as the bragging rights that will come with owning one of the most futuristic looking devices on the planet.