During the last week, we had OPPO’s annual INNO conference where the company revealed a set of interesting products like its OPPO AR Glasses 2. However, the big star of the show undoubtedly was the Oppo X 2021 a smartphone with a smart rollable display. The device was really interesting with a motor-powered sliding mechanism that unrolls the display always that requested by a gesture on the border. In my humble opinion, this concept seems to be more interesting than anything presented in the foldable segment. After all, you have an overall smartphone display that can be extended to a tablet form factor without apparent shortcomings. Despite its appeal, Oppo has no short-term plans to build a mass-market device with this design. Oppo certainly knows how to bury our dreams.
“Although there is no plan for its commercialization in the short term, it will serve as a guide for the transformation and evolution of future product form factors. Commercialization requires market research and business justification, and may take some time,” wrote Oppo to Android Authority.
Apparently, the big reason here is the same that prevents companies from jumping in the foldable display segment. Oppo seems to be waiting for more durable flexible screens. The concept device uses a plastic screen, just like the current gang of foldable smartphones. It comes with a “hardcover” to improve durability, but maybe the results won’t reach the company’s requirements for selling to customers. So far, most Android OEMs are waiting for a better display solution to start shipping foldable smartphones. Samsung pretty much has the segment under its belt, but this is likely going to change in the coming months.
According to reports, OPPO’s solution uses a display manufactured by BOE and the solution still is under development. Unfortunately, our dreams of having a convenient device that extends its 6.7-inch display to 7.4-inch seem to be a little away. However, not everything is lost for the rollable display believers! LG is working in a rollable smartphone codenamed “B Project”. Apparently, the device is coming in March 2021 and will use an LG Display. What remains to be seen is if it will be an actual product or just a concept demo. Of course, we’re not expecting it to be cheap. Hopefully, it will come in the same price levels as the first Galaxy Fold, which is acceptable for new technology.