Samsung could be bringing back the flip phone with a new foldable smartphone that boasts two screens.
The so-called Galaxy X reportedly has a pair of OLED displays with a hinge in the middle allowing it to fold open 180 degrees.
Samsung has already placed orders for components and is planning to build between 2,000 and 3,000 units before July, reports suggest.
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Samsung is preparing to test a prototype of the foldable smartphone this year according to a report in South Korean news outlet The Investor.
‘Samsung seems to be testing the waters with the dual-screen device to gather ideas about its upcoming foldable phone,’ a source told the publication.
The company first filed a patent for a foldable device last year.
It could lead to a handset that can easily transform into a tablet – simply by unfolding it.
The document shows a narrow Samsung device with a screen that bends and folds like an old-school flip phone handset, using a large hinge.
The device is described as something that can be ‘folded or unfolded semi automatically.’
The patent also referred to both a ‘flexible’ and ‘secondary’ display, which is supposed to activate when you fold the device.
But the problem, multiple sources say, isn’t with the technology but whether Samsung can work out marketing and profitability issues.
Last month it was revealed that Samsung has secretly been showing off a radical ‘Foldable Valley’ device and could unveil it later this year in a bid to deflect attention from Apple‘s iPhone 8.
Apple is expected to unveil its ‘iPhone Edition’ in September – with the latest rumours saying Samsung could show off the folding design a few days earlier at the IFA show in Berlin.
Samsung’s unnamed smartphone was apparently showcased to a limited number of partners at MWC 2017, as the South Korean giant is trying to prevent leaks, according to BGR.
Korean site ETNews says the firm will begin widespread testing of prototypes later this year, and although Samsung could announce it as an Apple spoiler, the handset will not go on sale until next year.