The following year would likely herald the start of the foldable smartphone age, with rumors suggesting that the mobile industry could see as many as five foldable devices being released within 2019. Among these devices, arguably the most highly-anticipated is the Samsung Galaxy X, a smartphone that has pretty much dominated the rumor mill for years. While the Galaxy X could the getting most of the headlines, another smartphone from Samsung’s main rival in South Korea could be bringing something even more impressive to the table next year.
LG has filed a patent for a flexible smartphone design that folds horizontally halfway down the entire length of the phone. This is done through a complex four-link hinge, which invokes elements of the hinge used by Microsoft in the Surface Book. Interestingly, the patent also outlines a design that features two mics, two loudspeakers, and dual antennas, according to a GSM Arena report. They also reported that one of the cameras is placed on the outside of the closed display, so that users of the device can still take snapshots despite the handset being closed.
Perhaps most notable in LG’s patent, however, is the fact that the foldable smartphone’s design is bezel-less, allowing the upcoming hybrid device to feature a single, seamless screen when it is folded out. This is particularly notable, since a good number of flexible smartphone concepts involve a design concept that is somewhat conservative. With a smartphone that is both flexible and bezel-less, there is a pretty good chance that LG could make a significant mark in the mobile industry and place it ahead of competitors next year, provided that it releases its hybrid device, of course.
— Technabob (@technabob) February 24, 2016
In a lot of ways, it would be incredibly great if LG can become a leader in the foldable smartphone race. The company, after all, has been largely eclipsed by Samsung for years, with devices such as the S-series usually taking the limelight away from otherwise excellent devices like LG’s G-series, as noted in a T3 report.
Of course, LG’s recent patent does not really indicate that the handset described in the document is already starting production. Nevertheless, it does show that Samsung’s main rival in its home country of South Korea is doing what it can to up the ante in the coming flexible smartphone wars. With players such as Apple and Huawei expected to join the fray with flexible devices of their own, LG’s bezel-less Galaxy X competitor could ultimately prove to be a formidable competitor in the smartphone industry.