Samsung is about to be the next notch in the iPhone’s belt. When iPhone X was first realized, the usual suspects on the Android side mocked, then stared in shocked disbelief at the sales numbers, then started cloning in record speed.
It started with Chinese companies that no one ever heard of. Then it quickly escalated to companies you know and love, including those who were in the early mocking brigade. Pretty soon, it became hard to find a new Android phone that didn’t sport an iPhone X-style notch, even if it served no particular purpose. In most cases, the OS was not even ready for the unibrows, cutting off, or otherwise displaying elements in unusual ways.
Even after Google caved, Samsung was the lone holdout. But if the Verge is correct, “Samsung will put notches on its future phones.”
“Hassan Anjum, a director of product marketing at Samsung, took the stage to highlight Samsung’s previous breakthroughs in reducing bezels and maximizing display size year after year. ‘We’re going to keep going. The bezels are going to shrink even further,’ Anjum said. ‘We’re going to push the limits with our new lineup: the Infinity U, V, and O displays. These are new concepts that are just around the corner, and I can’t wait to tell you more about them.'”
The U, V, and O series displays all have small notches or cutouts. However, the size of those notches more resembles the Essential Phone than the iPhone X. But since the Essential Phone has largely been forgotten, those cutouts will forever be compared to what Apple is now doing on all of their new phones.
The future Samsung designs also speak to a lack of ambition with regard to the front camera. The reason the Essential Phone had such a small notch is that it only housed the selfie camera. Apple’s notch has more than a selfie camera. It houses a complex array of sensors that handle Face ID and augmented reality features.
It is hard to imagine that Samsung will not offer more robust features similar to what Apple is doing. There is some speculation that what they are really working on is a type of slider that will hide the camera array until needed. At least one phone on the market is already doing this. Another possibility is that the notched phones will be for the low-end and midrange, leaving the high-end for the true “Infinity Displays.”