Samsung really has a thing for foldable hardware. First, we heard word of a foldable phone. Then, a foldable tablet (that's also a phone). And now, Samsung wants origami screens in its laptops too, according to the company's VP of PC marketing, Lee Min-cheol.
Samsung hasn't exactly been shy about acknowledging that it has a foldable smartphone in the works. Just last month the head of Samsung's mobile division, DJ Koh, said that the company might debut the new device at its Developer Conference in November.
Resources are being poured into "new form factors of laptops", writes Korea Herald's Song Su-hyun, with one of those packing a "foldable display".
The precise benefits of such a device aren't clear, beyond perhaps being more compact, and Min-cheol only muddied the waters:
"Like foldable smartphones, Samsung is collaborating with display makers to develop laptops with foldable displays that will not just simply fold in and out but create new value and user experience, amid the changing market trends for laptops."
Uh huh. "New value and user experience" doesn't say much at all. Still, it makes sense for Samsung to go all-in on foldable gadgets, considering its phone and tablet businesses are already on board.
Whether foldable displays prove a hit will depend on a number of factors, the major one being the quality of the screens themselves. Consumers have been spoiled by high-resolution, pixel-dense screens on their gadgets, and I suspect many will be unwilling to compromise for something that could end up a novelty.
A big shift is coming with the upcoming arrival of foldable phones. Over the last couple years, Samsung has been pushing to be the first to market with claims of delivering one as early as 2018 — and now, its top executive is back at it.