Samsung’s much-hyped foldable phone Galaxy Fold is yet to hit the store shelves due to durability issues. But the Korean company has already been working on the second-generation Galaxy Fold. If reports coming out of South Korea are to be believed, the Samsung Galaxy Fold 2 isn’t that far away. And it will look more like the foldable Moto Razr than Galaxy Fold.
The Korean company has learned some hard lessons from the Galaxy Fold. So, the Galaxy Fold 2 is unlikely to face the same problems that plagued the first-gen model. Korean publication ETNews has learned from its sources that the Samsung Galaxy Fold 2 would have a new form factor, though it will continue to use the in-folding technology of its predecessor.
The Galaxy Fold 2 would have a clamshell design with an in-folding screen, similar to the new Moto Razr. The current Fold has a 4.6-inch cover display when unfolded. Folding the device reveals a giant 7.3-inch internal display with a notch. It aims to turn a large smartphone into a tablet. But the new model will be different.
Sources told ETNews that the Fold 2 would aim to make large smartphones smaller by folding them. It won’t morph into a tablet. It is said to have a small 1-inch cover display to give you quick access to things like notifications, time, cellular connectivity, and battery charge. Unfolding the device will bring up a 6.7-inch display, the same as the Galaxy S10 5G.
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It would fold along the horizontal access to become an ultra-compact device that fits in your small pocket. It will also make the main display a little less prone to accidental damage because the phone will probably be folded when you are putting it in your pocket or pulling it out. Only time will tell whether users will be willing to pay more for portability.
Another Korean publication The Elec Report has learned from its sources that the Samsung Galaxy Fold 2 would support the S Pen stylus, which has so far been the signature feature of the Note line. According to the publication, Samsung has asked its S Pen suppliers to start making components for the stylus that could fit inside the second-gen Galaxy Fold.
The Samsung Galaxy Fold 2 is set to enter production by November this year, claims ETNews. The device could be unveiled in December before going to sale in the first quarter of 2020. It indicates that despite the issues with the first-gen Fold, Samsung is committed to its foldable phone line. If the launch timeline turns out to be accurate, the Fold 2 could be one of the biggest competitors of the original Galaxy Fold, which is yet to hit the store shelves.
Samsung was supposed to launch the first-gen Galaxy Fold in April this year. But the review units the company had sent out to early reviewers were plagued with display and durability issues. A protective layer on top of the flexible display looked like a regular screen protector, which many reviewers accidentally removed. It caused irreparable damage to the screen. People who did not remove the protective layer complained that the screen would flicker and then unexpectedly stop working.
The company decided to delay the launch and address the issues. It has repeatedly promised to provide a new launch date for the Galaxy Fold, but no one knows for sure when it’s coming. Some speculate that it could launch alongside the next-gen Galaxy Note 10 in August, but Samsung would not want the Fold to eat into the sales of the Note line. A few days ago, the US Federal Communications Commission (FCC) certified the 5G version of Galaxy Fold.
Earlier this month, Samsung Display Vice-President Kim Seong-cheol said at an industry conference that most of the Galaxy Fold problems have been ironed out, clearing the path for its release. He added that the device was “ready to hit the market,” without specifying when it would go on sale. Supply chain reports have indicated that Samsung could launch it in July at the earliest.
Samsung claims the Galaxy Fold has been tested to withstand more than 200,000 folding cycles without showing any signs of damage, which means it should last about six years if you fold and unfold it a hundred times every day. The device packs 12GB RAM, 512GB storage, and runs Qualcomm Snapdragon 855 processor.
Amid the uncertainty over its release date, AT&T and Best Buy have canceled all the Galaxy Fold pre-orders. AT&T has also given the affected customers a $100 gift card. Customers will be able to place another order when Samsung shares the new release date.