Samsung announces foldable 4.6- to 7.3-inch ‘Galaxy Fold’ phone with giant off-center notch, starts at $1,980

“At its Unpacked 2019 event that took place in San Francisco today, Samsung officially unveiled its foldable smartphone, the Galaxy Fold,” Juli Clover reports for MacRumors. “When folded up, the Galaxy Fold has a 4.6-inch display that’s designed to fit in the palm of a hand, and when opened up, it has a 7.3-inch display that’s tablet sized. It works with a hidden hinge with gears that are under the display.”

“Samsung worked with Google to create apps optimized for the dual-display fold, which supports a feature called App Continuity to keep the same apps open regardless of whether the Galaxy Fold is open or closed,” Clover reports. “With Google Maps, for example, in a folded mode you can see the map, but if you open it up, you can see a whole lot more…

“It has six cameras — three on the back, two on the inside, and one on the front so it can capture images no matter which way it’s folded,” Clover reports. “Pricing starts at a whopping $1,980 and it will be available starting on April 26.”

Read more in the full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: That massive, off-center notch is a horror show. Not to mention its privacy-trampling, user tracking, fragmented-all-to-hell nightmare of an OS with a Samsung skin slapped atop it all.

If it’s not an iPhone, it’s a toxic hellstew — regardless of which South Korean or Chinese dishwasher maker or American online advertiser masquerading as a search engine is peddling it.

Now, just how thick is that thing when closed? We’ll tell you what Samsung doesn’t want to talk about: 14 mm – 17 mm thick on the side with the hinge! For comparison, an iPhone XS is just 7.7 mm thin. Even the Motorola RAZR V3 circa 2004 was just 13.9 mm when closed.

The South Korean dishwasher maker is peddling a brick! Hey, is that a Galaxy Fold in your pocket or are you just happy to see us?

Here’s Samsung’s best attempt are promoting the thing by trying to hide its many weaknesses and drawbacks:

We’ll see a mess of weird attempts before Apple shows how it’s to be done, as usual.MacDailyNews, January 23, 2019

As with fingerprint and facial recognition, when Apple debuts a foldable iPhone, then foldable smartphones will have been done right. — MacDailyNews, January 17, 2019

We’ll happily wait for the day when foldable displays can be manufactured in the massive quantities required for a real iPhone, thanks.

SEE ALSO:
Xiaomi reveals dual-folding smartphone prototype (with video) – January 23, 2019
Samsung’s foldable Galaxy phone will cost ‘twice the price of a premium phone’ – January 18, 2019
Lenovo planning to resurrect Razr as a foldable $1,500 cellphone – January 17, 2019
Corning’s bendable Gorilla Glass glass could shape the foldable phones of the future – December 6, 2018
Can foldable phones help Samsung copy Apple? – November 7, 2018
Apple granted a second patent for a folding iPhone with flexible hinge – October 16, 2018
Apple gets 49 new U.S. patents including a foldable iPhone and an iPhone design invented by Steve Jobs – September 4, 2018
BoA Merrill Lynch: Apple is prepping a ‘foldable’ iPhone; U.S. and China trade tensions not an issue for Apple – March 23, 2018
Apple seeks patent for a foldable iPhone – November 28, 2017
Apple teams up with LG Display for foldable iPhone due to concerns over tech leaks to Samsung – October 11, 2017
Apple, LG Display discuss OLED display deal for 2019 – September 7, 2017
LG Display to supply OLED panels to Apple – July 31, 2017
Apple to invest $2.70 billion in LG Display’s OLED production – July 28, 2017
Apple and LG Display plan to derail Samsung’s OLED expansion plans – July 25, 2017
LG Display to invest $3.56 billion in flexible OLED plant – May 30, 2017
Apple patent details foldable iPhone – January 26, 2017
Apple granted U.S. patent for bendable or foldable iPhone using advanced carbon nanotube structures – November 1, 2016
Apple is granted another patent for new flexible handset design – November 22, 2016

31 Comments

  1. I wouldnt mind a thicker iPhone for more battery. Also, I think there are some genuinly cool things going on with both the fold and the new galaxy 10.

    With the 10 a cutout instead of a notch is interesting. The under screen fingerprint reader is cool. I would want it in addition to faceID, but having either the finger print or faceID would be really cool. Being able to charge headphones/watch from your phone is cool.

    The fold screen itself is cool. The main screen when closed is near useless skinny. 4.6″ to 7.3″ is pretty decent, but I think if they made it about 5″ front screen and 8″ expanded unfolded screen, they’d really be on to something. iPad mini at 7.9″ is very ussable.

    Multitasking 3 things off the phone is great.

    That the galaxy 10 can have 1TB base storage, with an SD card bringing it to 1.5TB is cool.

    Still has puke android. But a lot of cool stuff, and not just mere iphone ripoff stuff that is normally what samsung does. So Kudos to them. I hope it inspires apple to do more

    1. Very thoughtful and reasonable assessment, especially for a zombie (lol)!

      MDN’s Take on the thickness is way too harsh, imo. First, this is a first generation design. The original iPhone was relatively thick, too. Second, if you stack two 7.7 mm thin iPhone XS together, then you get 15.4 mm thick, which is in the range of 14 mm – 17 mm thick for the foldable Galaxy. Furthermore, you have to have a bend radius on the display, so additional thickness at the hinge is needed to create that gap so the display is not creased. Third, three displays consume a good bit of power and graphics processing capability. So, I imagine that the two sections are largely packed with batteries.

      Is it pocketable? Possibly for some. Is it too heavy and thick to use a lot? Only real life data and experience will reveal how practical the design is for an everyday mobile device. I suspect that it is relatively fragile, and it is difficult to conceive of a good design for a protective case. Also, one has to wonder about its robustness – how many times can you open and close it before the display cracks or a connection loosens? Again, only time and real-world experience will reveal that answer.

      If my memory is good, it closely resembles drawings contained in an Apple patent from a couple of years ago. MDN carried the article.

      I am not a Google/Android or Samsung lover – not at all! But I try to be as reasonable and fair as possible. I don’t close my mind or my eyes to reality. In this instance, Samsung has produced a very interesting cutting edge smartphone product. At around $2K it may not sell in huge numbers, but you can be that a lot of celebrities will be flaunting it soon.

    2. Good luck with that apples busy getting their ass kicked over their max so that’s their focus now. Do you know Apple they can’t do more than two things at a time they only have 250,000 employees

  2. There should be some worried execs in cupertino right now. This is a gamechanger. Apple has been selling the same form factor for 10 years now and samsung is willing to go out on a limb and try something different. I guess Samsung is thinking different. What’s apple’s response? Faster faceID?

    Apple has about $200 billion in cash; that’s a lot of money that could be used to develop something new. What are they doing with it? For the last for the last 5 years they been regurgitating the same phone. And they wonder why demand has dropped.

    I hate when people use the “if Steve Jobs were around” argument, but honestly if he were here, heads would be rolling at apple spaceship for allowing Samsung to bring this first or Apple would have launched this 2 years ago. Either way, it seems Apple has gotten so big, it’s now a victim of its own success.

    1. The Galaxy Fold is an embarrassment. The hinge design is novel, but otherwise, the execution is pathetic. Would you really carry around a phone that is 16mm thick in 2019? The outer screen is just awful and the aspect ratio of both the inner and outer screens will make third party apps totally suck. Also notice how there was no on-stage demo and they were careful to pick the camera angles so that the bend point of the screen was not clearly visible? I guarantee that it looks like crap in person.

      Samsung is charging $2K for an alpha prototype device! Who would actually buy this oddity with their own money? Fools, that’s who.

    2. January 9, 2007: “Steve Jobs, when he announced the original iPhone, said it was 5 years ahead of the competition.”

      “Steve Jobs explains why a company’s product deteriorates as it becomes more successful.”

      @Daddy……..“if Steve Jobs were around”……. “heads would be rolling at apple spaceship.”

      The 1st head should be Tim Cook

      1. Are you an idiot? If Saint Steve was around he’d be trash talking this ugly kludge. The whole idea of making a phone work like a tablet or a laptop is not viable. You just end up with a limited device that fails in being all three. This goes for making iPads into laptops. STOP THE MADNESS!!! A foldable phone will nor work. Until it’s embodiment is vastly improved with tech that does not currently exist. Just because a company can do something doesn’t mean it should be done. The original iPhone was a stylistically beautiful break with all foldable phones. It was not this awkward and would never have been soccessful if it was.

        1. Apple with a competent CEO would have released a similar superior product years ago. Instead, Cook focused on incremental changes, social issues and squandered the lead Apple had over competitors.

          Samsung’s presentation was very impressive. What does Apple have to compete with it?

  3. Gotta respect how hard Samsung has worked to make the S10 phones look like iPhone X series phones. I love the chrome plated aluminum frame meant to exactly mimic the polished stainless steel frame on the latest iPhones. I also love how they slavishly copied the iPhone XS, XR, and XS Max screen sizes. So fear driven.

    But for me, the most shockingly lame thing was how they shamelessly ripped off nearly everything about AirPods, especially the industrial design of the charging case and the pairing UI. Craven Samsung executives back to their old tricks.

    1. Problem is Samsung and Android, amongst others have grabbed much of the market that should be owned by Apple. And yes, those consumers money is still green and they too have their ecosystem. Dont fool yourself that they aren’t taking market share Apple needs.

      This only really mattes if you own shares and have skin in the game, otherwise, its just a phone.

  4. I’m impressed by how well they built the hinge so it disappears when opened as well as how evenly flat the device is when folded. The other foldable Android device, Royole Flexipi, seems clumsy in comparison. That difference in tech required to create such a tight fold in the flexible display is huge. Any bets when Apple gets around to foldable displays they’ll be purchased from Samsung or at least patent the tech from them?

    1. Apple currently has to source its OLED displays from Samsung. So far, its efforts with Japan Display and other companies has not caught up to Samsung’s OLED technology and manufacturing capability. Therefore, Samsung appears to be the only game in town if Apple wants to develop a competing foldable phablet.

      We will see how this develops. But I have to admit that I would much rather have seen Apple unveil something similar to this device, if only as an R&D demo at an Apple event, to give a glimpse into the company’s progress behind the veil of secrecy. But I would be willing to bet that Apple already has something similar to or better than this foldable Galaxy in their R&D lab right now. Apple just didn’t feel that it was ready for primetime. When it is, it will be three years ahead…or so I hope.

  5. Yeah, and I hate saying this but MDN, if you don’t want to buy a FOLD, you don’t have to. But millions will, As a shareholder, I’m concerned Apple has been late to the party in almost every market. And, For Christ sake, all Apple execs would have to do is READ MDN to get common sense ideas… We’ve all presented great ideas over the years, begging for utility, long battery life, bigger screens, (how late was Apple to that party? ) My friends at work gloat that their Samsung phones had big screens, 1080p waterproof and just as capable cameras way before iPhone and it was true.. ( around 2014-15) Everyone expected Apple to dominate the home years ago, rethink TV, computing, Cars, Health, AI, Gaming, Entertainment.. and they’re nowhere with these segments. They sat around making diamond rings and their silly spaceship that probably has empty offices in it. Steve Jobs gave Cook a five year plan,, and those years and ideas are over. Hubris… Cook and 132000 Apple employees are probably afraid to introduce ideas and go against the grain. Apple needs a visionary. Head should be rolling in Cupertino, Oh, By the way, Samsung makes iPhone Screens, so why is this a surprise at all?

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