At its annual developer conference later today, Samsung executives are expected to show off something pretty nutty: a smartphone that folds.
Details about the new device—and the odd blurry photo—have been leaking out for the last couple of months.
According to early reports, it will be a smartphone with a widescreen display that you can fold up like a little book. It’s expected Samsung will call it the Galaxy F. It’s also expected that Samsung won’t actually show us a physical handset this morning, but will instead just show us photos of the bendy phone and some information about its user interface.
This is all set to happen at the Samsung Developer Conference, which is taking place Wednesday and Thursday at the Moscone Center in San Francisco, California. The conference keynote where the phone will be revealed begins at 10 am Pacific (1 pm Eastern) and lasts for 90 minutes. You can watch the whole thing in the video player at the top of this page.
Sometimes My Screens Bend Back
So when can you buy it? Not for a while. This week’s conference is for developers, and Samsung is expected to deliver key specs and images specifically to allow software makers to get familiar with the design and how it works. Maybe then those developers would want to go back to their offices and write some apps to fill the phone’s ultra-wide screen.
Revealing the phone early will also allow Samsung to plant its flag as one of the several mobile industry players working on devices with folding screens. Huawei and LG are both reportedly prepping bending or folding devices for 2019—we may even see them at MWC in February. Just days ago, a start-up called Royale with offices in China and Silicon Valley unveiled the FlexPai, a large mobile device with a bending display.
Whether we’d actually be happier or more productive if we carried phones with bendy screens is debatable. But within an industry that feeds on daring innovation—even if it comes with an uncertain level of utility and an exceedingly high price tag—some companies see flexible screens as the best path forward. After Samsung’s announcement, we can’t wait to see how this trend continues to unfold.