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Samsung sets 2016 deadline for foldable screens

Samsung have been bending over backwards to develop foldable screens for its phones and tablets, setting a deadline of New Year 2016 to bring the new technology to market.

The news was announced at its Analyst Day in Korea, where it also announced that it expects to shift over 100 million Galaxy devices by the end of the 2013.

A slide during the presentation entitled “Enabling a Smarter Life” (pictured above) demonstrated that Samsung’s battle plan entails developing the technology in three stages: the introduction of curved screens in 2013, bendy screens by 2015, and the coveted foldable display by late 2015 or early 2016.

Phase one of the plan has already been successful with the launch of the Samsung Galaxy Round last month. The company seems to think that stretching that technology into bended devices will be reasonably smooth sailing, but a spiky sticker slapped between “Bended” and “Foldable” on the timeline which reads “Technology Barriers” could stand in the way of progress.

What exactly is this wall that developers may find themselves banging their heads against? That's currently unspecified, but it’s pretty clear that making the screen foldable is one thing, making the rest of the device malleable is another. To be able to manipulate your mobile device into different forms requires not just flexible screens, but bendable batteries, processors, chips and other bits to boot.

The timescale will be of interest to electronics rival LG, who are also about to enter the race for bendiness with the launch of their new smartphone, the G Flex. It is curved like the Galaxy Round, however LG seem to be one step ahead because a video surfacing online courtesy of The Verge seems to suggest that the G Flex will bend - as the name suggests – in a subtle flexing motion.

Stay tuned with ITProPortal to follow the twists and turns of the race for flexibility as the story unfolds over the coming months.

Image: The Register