Poll: would you queue for a flexible, unbreakable Samsung phone?

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Joe capitalises on a life-long love of blinking lights and upbeat MIDI soundtracks covering the latest developments in smartphones and tablet computers. When not ruining his eyesight staring at small screens, Joe ruins his eyesight playing video games and watching movies. Twitter: @Joseph_Hanlon

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A recent Reuters article is predicting flexible screen tech for either the Samsung Galaxy S4 or its successor, with one analyst tipping the tech to be commercially available by 2014 at the latest. Is a flexible screen the hot new feature for your next phone?

And if it is, why would you want it?

Reuters is calling this screen "unbreakable", with the new technology replacing the glass substrate in conventional smartphone screens with a plastic that should keep the display from being damaged. Stanford Bernstein analyst Mark Newman is quoted by Reuters as saying that "either the Galaxy S 4 or S 5 will have unbreakable, and even possibly flexible and foldable displays by 2014."

We've known that Samsung has been working on flexible OLED displays for some time, so it is no great surprise that the technology is coming closer to reality and, in fact, this wouldn't be the first time we've seen a flexible display in action. Nokia showed a prototype flexible handset at Nokia World last year. This handset didn't bend or fold, but Nokia had developed a UI that responded to the phone being twisted to perform commands, like zooming in and out.

Would you queue for a flexible phone?

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As cool as this demonstration by Nokia was, we wondered whether we would use these sorts of phone-bending commands every day. In a similar vein, Samsung has incorporated a number of motion controls into its Android devices recently. These are used to control specific functions on the phones, like switching images in the photo gallery by tilting it one direction or another, but in our opinion, none of these gestures make using the phones easier than just using the touchscreen.

There are other obvious benefits of this approach to screen design, though. No glass means the possibility of a much lighter handset, and possibly thinner, too. Also, Samsung is said to be working with OLED display technology for its flexible screens, which should result in a spectacular on-screen image, given what we've seen from OLED screens already.

So, what do you think? Is a flexible OLED display the sort of groundbreaking tech that would have you queuing up for a new phone?



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trebor83 posted a comment   
Australia

Sure the screen may be flexible, but what about the battery that powers it? What about the chips that operate it? Are they going to b flexible to? Of course they won't. So we are going to have a "flexible" screen in a rigid body. This has gimmick writen all over it.

 

Will1505 posted a reply   

There was a time people would have said AMOLED was a gimmick too, and now look at it

 

TylerS2 posted a reply   

One is a sub category of a sub category of a sub category of flat displays. The other is something imagined for a good 60 years as future technology. Pretty different. Anyway, OLED displays are way better than AMOLED, I can't even look at an AMOLED for more than a few minutes without strain.

 

Will1505 posted a reply   

You do know AMOLED is OLED right? Just a type of it. You either have Passive Matrix OLED or Active Matrix OLED, AMOLED being the newer tech.

I'm guessing its more of a distance thing than the actual screen tech. Maybe if you stood a foot away from a television, your eyes would get strained too.

 

Pining posted a comment   
Australia

A screen is just a screen until it can do something far better than ther screens. If it doesn't break, it would be nice. If it opened up a whole new way of communicating it would be good.

Time will tell.

Maybe apple should take out a patent on the idea.

 

Joseph Hanlon posted a reply   
Australia

Shhh, don't say that too loudly. They might be listening.




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