Samsung flexible OLED display prototype phones showcased
Samsung has unveiled its flexible OLED display technology in some prototype phone models
Samsung has revealed a selection of prototype smartphones fitted with its new flexible OLED display technology at CES 2013.
The devices are all still fairly experimental at this stage but some lucky expo attendees were fortunate enough to get hands-on time with these handsets.
The one we’re seeing most imagery and feedback for looks fairly standard at first glance – until you realise that one of the long edges slopes down the side of the device, creating a wedge-like profile.
The curved part of the display means that all these functions could be viewed and accessed on the phone while looking at it from the side – ideal for quick glances without needing to fully take your handset out of a pocket or bag.
Precise specs weren’t given, although it’s estimated to be a 5-inch display with a 16:9 aspect ratio at a 720p resolution.
We say ‘phone’, apparently it isn’t fully-functional yet with The Verge’s report describing it thusly: ‘it lacks a radio, operating system, camera, and most any other feature you'd find in a phone. Instead, in its current form, the prototype is more like a touch-capable digital picture frame that uses a low-power processor to cycle through images of a mocked-up UI.’
Said report also claimed the build quality wasn’t great, being ‘poorly made of plastic’ and feeling hollow. But let’s not forget this is Samsung we’re talking about here. Quelle surprise.
Regardless of the functional aspects – something for which Samsung seems to be struggling to come up with decent ideas to make use of the tech - it's still a compelling design idea.
We’d argue it doesn’t need a functional facet either. The simple fact is that current smartphone form-factors are becoming repetitive and just look at how much nicer a fairly basic phone shape can be using this display tech. The aesthetics alone are reason enough.
Also, are we the only ones thinking 360-degree wrap-around display?
Two other prototypes were reportedly also shown, one with a ‘rollout’ display panel and one with a folding ‘clamshell’ design, though of course unlike existing clamshells this one allowed the display to fold in on itself.
This is all still very much in the development stage and it may be some time before Samsung introduces the tech into a product line, the company has remained tight-lipped on when it expects to reach mass-manufacturing and commercial production, although within 2013 is the goal.