Foldable display technology is actively developing and the market has already formed a separate segment of devices whose displays can be folded. But what Oppo showed at one time could break the brain – the display slides out of the case. A similar idea captured the minds of TCL engineers, who six months ago showed the Fold’n Roll concept, where the smartphone can be folded out and extended.
And just the other day at the DTC 2021 exhibition, which took place in China, TCL showed a prototype of the Fold’n Roll, where hinges and mechanics were combined in one device. The trick of the device is that it can folde in half, and if necessary to obtain a large screen area, it “stretches” to the left and moves it with special motors. The device looks beautiful and impressive in this design.
Whether a TCL smartphone will ever appear in this design is unclear. The company itself prefers not to voice its plans for the commercial implementation of the idea. To produce something like this is a laborious and expensive task. The idea looks interesting, but the level of technology development will not allow us to offer a reliable and durable smartphone in this design, and also at a reasonable price.
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Foldable Smartphone Shipments to Grow 10x by 2023
According to Counterpoint Research’s latest Foldable Smartphone Shipment Forecast; the shipments for 2021 will remain in single digit, at around 9 million units. However, it will still be a 3x growth over 2020; with Samsung dominating with over 88% market share. By 2023, we expect a 10x growth in foldable smartphone shipments. Even with more OEMs entering the foldable smartphone space, we expect Samsung to continue dominating with nearly 75% market share. If Apple is on track to release its foldable smartphone by 2023, it will not only be an inflection point in taking foldables mainstream but also improve the component yield and scale for the entire supply chain.
The upcoming Samsung Galaxy foldables are highly anticipated smartphones as they are expected to bring major improvements over their predecessors. “With a significant price drop, improved design, and appearance; Samsung is likely to target younger customers with the new foldable Flip smartphone. The new Galaxy Z models will get S Pen support too; which can help absorb existing Note users,” said Senior Analyst Jene Park, who leads the foldables research at Counterpoint.
The premium smartphone market in China will be particularly interesting for Samsung. So, “Despite having a negligible market share, Samsung can secure Huawei’s vacant spot; and its success can contribute towards total shipment and sales volumes for its new foldables,” Park added.