back to article Samsung readies bendy smarties for 2013

Development work on Samsung mobiles fitted with flexible OLED displays is nearing completing, with handsets set to be released in the first half of 2013, it has been claimed. A source said to be close to the matter reckons Samsung is almost ready to launch flexible displays for mobile handsets, the Wall Street Journal reports …

COMMENTS

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  1. hplasm
    Happy

    Rounded corners-

    Are so 2D...

  2. Silverburn
    Thumb Up

    If ever there was a "avoid version 1.0" product, bendy screens is where it's at.

    Still...Kudos where kudos is deserved!

  3. ukgnome
    Thumb Up

    Cyberpunks will soon have

    Wearable android arm grieves. Where do I sign up?

    1. jai

      Re: Cyberpunks will soon have

      I was going to comment about how this tech has zero practical use in the mobile phone market - but a cyberpunk style smart phone device wrapped around my forearm? oh yes please!!!

      Sadly, i doubt it'll come to that. Those prototypes in the picture suggest that while they can create a curved screen, they don't want you changing it after it's been produced. Which means we'll just get a load of phones that look a lot like today's phones, but with a slight curvature into the screen that picks up a reflection from any light in the room now.

      1. Rampant Spaniel

        Re: Cyberpunks will soon have

        I was thinking more along the lines of a phone\phablet with a large screen you can fold up and put in your pocket perhaps?

      2. exanime

        Re: Cyberpunks will soon have

        Did you guys NOT read the article... the phone will not bend, for the most part they will look and feel the same but they'll be cheaper to produce, lighter and perhaps (and I am adding this) more scratch/break resistant

        Those 3 features have huge practical uses.. the device will still come in a hard plastic/metal base which will make it unbendable

        1. Havin_it
          Pint

          @exanime Re: Cyberpunks will soon have

          Oh buzz off, Killington. They were merely speculating on what could eventually be achieved using this tech.

          Those mockup units do appear to show a fully-flexible screen, only attached to the rigid base on one edge (they're contained within rigid cases but it looks to be just for protection). If the real tech matches up to that, then a display "bangle" with just a small rigid box-o-chips in the middle is quite feasible.

          Further, while the chippery (and most currently-viable battery tech) does have to be rigid, PCBs don't, so there is possible scope for a semi-bendy casing as well. (Not saying it'll be easy to make such a package robust, but it's conceivable.)

          I prescribe several of these and a few episodes of Star Trek to get your fantasticator muscles back in shape.

  4. Senior Ugli

    phones for people on Mushrooms???

    not sure of the point in these?

  5. K
    Joke

    Bendy??

    The only use I can think of is for Dildo's to change colour... Oh Ah, fancy a black one tonight missus!

    1. JDX Gold badge

      Re: Bendy??

      yeah struggling to see the point... reflections off a curved screen sound annoying and what exactly am I supposed to curve the screen for - what shapes are useful?

      1. FartingHippo
        Holmes

        Re: Bendy??

        You could use the reflectivity to your advantage. Make a parabola and have the finest cigarette lighter known to man (assuming it's sunny).

        Those under the legal age will of course resort the time-honoured tradition of frying ants.

        1. jai

          Re: Bendy??

          if it's a parabola then it'd reflect the sunlight back up at your face, not down at the ants, no?

      2. Charles 9 Silver badge

        Re: Bendy??

        How about a convex shape that can conform to your forearm. Think Fallout's Pip-Boy or those other wrist computer you see in sci-fi. A 5-in smart device wrapped around your arm with perhaps a cover flap might attract some geeks.

  6. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Clever Innovation...

    Won't impress the market.

    What they need really need is to rehash/warm-over existing tech and smear it with a soupcon of over-egged marketing hype.

    1. Jedit
      Joke

      "What they need really need is to rehash/warm-over existing tech"

      Aren't Samsung in enough trouble already from violating Apple's patents?

    2. sniperpaddy
      FAIL

      Re: Clever Innovation...

      Then it would be an Apple product.

  7. Khaptain Silver badge
    Happy

    Not such a bad idea

    I "presume" it makes themn less breakable and possibly more wear resistant.

    They will also adapt better when in your pocket, most notably the front jeans pocket... I know the idea is a gimmick but wait until we see what the bofins will eventually manage to integrate them into, could be interesting.

  8. gskr
    Thumb Up

    I imagine with a curvy screen you could end up having it fold in half in a flip phone, but when unfolded it rests against a rigid back. Thereby you'd have a big screen phone that would actually fit in a pocket again.

    I'd buy that!

  9. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    tablets!

    Just occurred to me - this would be great for tablets.

    Finally a 10" tablet that you can fold in half to fit in your trouser pocket.

    Actually, this is Samsung isn't it? So they'll have a 10" Galaxy S5 phone that folds in half to be 5 inches in your pocket (fnar fnar) in "retro" clamshell styling

  10. Esskay
    Go

    I imagine

    It'll be a design feature - a very slight curve in the screen, possibly as another stylistic point of difference to the fruity firm. Alternatively a grid of apps that really did curve around the edge of the phone would look pretty cool (if completely pointless).

    It's uses as a "foldable" screen are dependent on the minimum curve radius that the screen can handle.

    1. supermoore

      Re: I imagine

      Samsung tried this via a design effect with the Nexus S, where at a glance it looks like the screen is slightly curved. Would produce some great looking phones, even if a slight curve is as far as it goes.

      More exciting though is the idea of a "port-less" phone, with wireless charging and bluetooth headphones etc, where the screen is the entire outer surface of the phone. Cool.

      1. Charles 9 Silver badge

        Re: I imagine

        I think most phones keep bevels on the edges so your fingers (gripping the phone on the sides) can rest on them without them curving over the edge and onto the screen itself.

  11. xyz
    Paris Hilton

    A phone with a bendy screen!!!

    I can see the adverts now. "Oi, Doll, wrap yer lips 'round this badboy." I seem to be having a paris-centric day.

  12. mrfill
    Happy

    Time for a calendar check...

    God, April Fools day gets earlier every year

  13. AceRimmer1980
    Thumb Up

    Leela's

    wrist thingy.

    That is all.

  14. TeeCee Gold badge
    Mushroom

    "Manufacturing handsets and tablets with plastic rather than glass..."

    Nooooooo!

    We've just got away from plastic screens that scratched easily, obliging a load of fannying around with crappy screen protectors.

    Who the hell wants to go back to that, now apparently with the added fun of getting the sodding things to stick, straight and bubble free, onto a curved screen?

  15. Code Monkey
    Thumb Up

    YESSSSS!

    It's the phone Nokia Banana fans have been waiting for all these years. AT LAST!

  16. Mystic Megabyte
    Pint

    chavs with balls?

    A spherical beach ball phone* so that you can facetweet from the pool in Dubai.

    *patent pending

    <--Lager

  17. Darryl

    Queue more iFan rants about 'build quality!', 'metal and glass, not cheap plastic!'

  18. Dan Paul
    Devil

    Minimum Bend Radius???

    It would help to know the minimum bend radius so one could better imagine the possibilities.

    Design & Tech Patents pending for below:

    My thought is a scroll where the display rolls up like a window shade and all the electronics are in the roller. Simply pull out the screen on a flat surface and voila instant tablet computer with enough display surface to have full 8.5 by 11 (okay A4 for you guys) work area and below that a touch screen keyboard as permanent part of the Oled display. There are collapsible antennae for military radios that are made on the principle of pretensioned steel tape like a tape measure that could be used to make the display stand up vertically and still be very compact.

    Obviously, I am available to discuss any liscencing or royalty deals. 10% of the gross should be sufficient....

    1. John LS

      Re: Minimum Bend Radius???

      Sounds like the Earth: Final Contact Global Link

  19. Dave 150

    The scroll fights back?

  20. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Picture shows a bendy screen with a metal side - FAIL

    Clearly the pictures are showing something they won't actually be selling, but even if the screens are as bendy as a transparency sheet, what exactly is the rest of the phone going to be made out of that will bend? How is the case going to bend like that? How about all the delicate electronics and antennas? I highly doubt it'll fold over like a flip phone - that requires a screen that does just bend it folds like a sheet of paper, without damaging the electronics within.

    So there are two possibilities for why this might matter:

    1) it is lighter than glass (good deal, so long as it's scratchproof like glass)

    2) the flexibility of the screen can allow the touchscreen to be pressure sensitive, and react differently depending on how hard you press. I'm sure there are some useful things that could be done with that.

  21. Mr.Mischief
    Trollface

    Apple is working on this too

    .. at least their patent office is.

  22. Martin Huizing
    Thumb Up

    Practical use? 3D glasses!

    slghtly curved for each eye: retina display for hd movies. Plugs right into your current phone.

    iMax 3D for the win!

  23. Anonymous Coward 15
    Paris Hilton

    It's bendy and it vibrates. Hmm.

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