We wrote about the future of flexible phones late last year, but there’s been lots more exciting news on the subject since then.
According to reports by the international news outlet Bloomberg, Samsung’s ‘Project Valley’ could result in two flexible smartphones being released as early as next year – one of which will fold in half like a compact mirror.
Lee Seung Woo, an analyst at IBK Securities in Seoul had this to say: “Next year is a probable scenario. Their biggest obstacle was related to making transparent plastics and making them durable, which seems resolved by now.”
And let’s not forget the South Korean technology giant LG, who is investing billions of dollars in creating thinner and more flexible screens.
It seems that the race is on to release the world’s first bendy phone. But if you’re still wondering what all the fuss is about, we’ve come up with a few reasons you should start thinking about being more flexible in the future.
1. Play with your phone
Courtesy of Phys
Flexible screens will open up a whole new way of interacting with your phone.
Researchers at Queen's University in Ontario have developed ReFlex, a smartphone screen that can be controlled by bend gestures. And rather brilliantly, they’ve been using it to play Angry Birds.
Dr. Vertegaal Professor of Human-Computer Interaction (HCI) explains: "When a user plays the Angry Birds game with ReFlex, they bend the screen to stretch the sling shot. As the rubber band expands, users experience vibrations that simulate those of a real stretching rubber band. When released, the band snaps, sending a jolt through the phone and sending the bird flying across the screen."
2. Wear your phone
The most recent news to hit the world of bendy phones was at Lenovo’s Tech World Conference in California, 9 June 2016.
During the event, the Chinese company showed off a phone that not only bends, but can be wrapped around the wrist and worn like a watch.
This wearable smartphone is known as the CPlus, and according to Peter Hortensius, Lenovo’s CTO, it’ll have a 4.26-inch flexible display and use the Android operating system.
The CPlus isn’t a full functioning device yet, though. It’s still in the development stage, and Lenovo hasn’t give an expected release date for it.
3. Roll your phone out
LG stole the show at the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas back in January, with a foldable 18-inch screen that could be rolled up like a piece of paper.
How LG’s roll-up screen could change everything.
Although it was just a concept – and the screen size is obviously more suited to a TV or tablet - it shows that LG is serious about developing this technology.
If you’ve ever wanted a bigger display, but aren’t too keen on carrying a phablet-sized device around with you, think for a moment about what a truly rollable screen could mean…
You’ll be able to take your compact phone out of your bag or pocket, and unroll its large display out. Then when you’re done - it all gets rolled back up again. That means no more oversized phones to take care of, and no more unsightly bulges.
If you’ve got any thoughts to share with us on the subject of bendy phones, let’s hear them. Post a comment below.