About 90 minutes in to a Samsung press conference, the stage went dark. A device that appeared to be a normal Samsung phone magically grew to the size to a small tablet. The device was then folded again and quickly taken off the stage. No information followed and we couldn’t see the device’s housing in the dark. But we knew: Samsung has figured out a folding display.
One device, two sizes. (Source: TechCrunch)
Imagine the possibilities of a device that can instantly double in size! No need to carry an awkwardly large phone or lug a tablet along with your mobile device. The potential is huge, but it’s going to take some time before this option hits the mainstream.
TechCrunch reports that the device was on stage for less than one minute, and no further details were given. But it’s clear that Android developers see the potential. Google added support for folding screens in early November, so a number of companies are likely working on this technology.
It’s always fun to dive into futuristic tech, but we also wonder, “Just how realistic is this?” Well, in the case of folding displays, both Apple and Samsung have long-been rumored to be in development phases. Honestly, this prototype could just be a way for Samsung to get attention after Apple’s October Event. The device didn’t actually do anything during its brief debut. It was literally opened, closed, and taken off stage.
How could this technology be used? Could doctors carry the device in their pockets to receive notifications from hospital staff and then unfold it to sit down and write notes? Could police officers carry the device on their belts and then pull up records and notes from an unfolded full display? Technology like this could change our everyday lives, in both personal and professional ways. It may still be a long way off, but seeing a working prototype of glass that can be folded in half is pretty exciting. Technology never stops changing!