Lenovo To Launch Foldable Notebook Ahead of Samsung?

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Lenovo demonstrated prototype tablets and smartphones housing flexible displays at Lenovo Tech World in June 2016, but its latest online video shows the company might launch other new products at the upcoming IFA in the next few weeks.

A new Lenovo Yoga notebook was among the new product lineup in the video to be unveiled on Aug. 31, 2016 at IFA. According to a GizmoChina report, this might be a sign that Lenovo has moved on from the prototype phase, and is preparing for the official launch.

Samsung and LG have deployed long term strategies in the field of foldable devices, and even launched flexible smartphones. Samsung announced it will be releasing a foldable smartphone by 2017, while rival LG is aiming to launch a similar product by next year. If Lenovo’s developments overtake Korean manufacturers, it will be a major victory for Chinese smartphone vendors.

According to a report from Korean media inews24, LG is accelerating its R&D process to start the sales of foldable smartphones. Recently, LG purchased crucial sensor components and other components required for the R&D of foldable smartphones. The company will develop several smartphone prototypes to secure profits, and to mass produce foldable smartphones.

Samsung is no longer focused on making OLED displays a killer application in their smartphones, and is not concerned of the potential impact of supplying OLED displays to iPhones, a Barron’s article cited Credit Suisse’s Keon Han saying. Samsung is confident in its ability in OLED innovation, and is rumored to be releasing a foldable smartphone by 2017. Han noted Samsung had showcased a prototype of the foldable smartphone on numerous occasions

According to the Barron’s report, Samsung is using a third generation OLED display technology that will enable the phone to be folded 180 degrees without tear or creasing. For instance Galaxy 7 is a bendable OLED, but cannot be repeatedly bent after being folded once. According to the Credit Suisse report the radius of the fold has been minimalized to 5 mm, but a 1 mm fold is required to make the smartphone appealing to consumers. This also means a larger bending angle is required.

Samsung is rumored to be collaborating with international and Korean manufacturers to overcome foldable smartphones mass production issues, reported etnews on April 1, 2016. The OLED display smartphone that will be mass produced in 2016 will use a foldable display, and hit store shelves by 2017. The OLED used for the phone can be folded in half and carried around in a way similar to a small booklet, and is about the same size of most smartphones on the market. But once the phone is unfolded it can be converted into a 7-inch tablet display, which is about the same size of an iPad Mini.

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