Samsung's new Galaxy Fold smartphone slash tablet is not without compromise. For one, when folded, it may be much thicker than virtually any other modern smartphone – possibly as thick as a Nintendo switch – while the way it folds over is quite cumbersome. And like its competitor Huawei Mate X, it has a big old fold through the middle of its foldable display.
At the Mobile World Congress 2019 in Barcelona, the reporters had no direct access to the Galaxy Fold on the screen. Instead, Samsung decided to present the device in a reflective case that made it deliberate or not as difficult to observe the fold as possible. If the photos above make it a bit harder to see, Gizmodo's Sam Rutherford described the showcase as "basically impossible" to make a good shot of "If It's Not Dead" – additional photos from different angles, provided by Phone's editor Scoop were uploaded. Chef Rich Brome to Twitter make it clearer. This is a big wrinkle!
In an advertising image distributed by Samsung, no wrinkle is visible – something that Apple at that time tried to remember the notch on its new line of iPhone X-based phones with comfortable indistinct backgrounds. In fact, Samsung appears to have chosen an image of wings of a butterfly arranged so that the kinked part of the device is not crossed.
It's clear that Samsung does not want people to wriggle over the furrow in the rut in the middle of the Galaxy Fold, which might give potential customers the impression that a distorted image is displayed. However, the fold seen by Gizmodo at the MWC 2019 looked perfect in direct view – only from acute angles (or if the light comes in), the fold is clear. In any case, it is clear that a truly seamless foldable phone will not be on the cards anytime soon. That's to be expected, because the probably biggest audience for these extremely expensive devices ($ 1980 for the Fold and around $ 2600 for the Mate X) is not the mass market. There are developers and niche consumers who really want a foldable device this year and are not put off by the cost or pitfalls of premature adoption.
However, keep in mind that Samsung's large, foldable son has a system folding before he spills so much cash.
Sam Rutherford contributed to this article.