I started writing on dual-screen PCs right around when editor-in-chief Zac Bowden broke the news of “ Microsoft’s foldable mobile device with an emphasis on pen and digital ink ” in 2017. ironically – Samsung is leading the charge and Microsoft is in the back.
Today, the South Korean firm wrote a blog post doubling on foldables. Citing its own internal consumer survey, Samsung noted that “the Galaxy Z Fold2 has 96% user satisfaction, and nearly 9 in 10 say they would buy a foldable phone again.” The company noted that it has lowered prices, offered its Z Premier support service, customer referrals and more to drive user adoption of the emerging technology.
In another recent survey mentioned by Samsung, YouGov asked 2,000 people about foldables, and precisely 50% were either “ very interested ” or “ interested ” in the technology.
Dual-screen, foldable devices still have a long way to go in capturing audiences, but interest is growing.
Samsung owners were even more enthusiastic (52%) and Apple iPhone users less (47%), which is not surprising. Turns out, if your brand doesn’t make a foldable phone, you’re less excited to own one (once Apple “invented” folding screens for the world, we’re sure that will change).
Indeed, a lot is happening in this booming market. Huawei now has its Mate X2 Pro and Xiaomi has Mi Mix Fold – both iterating Samsung’s Galaxy Z Fold2 design. Microsoft has its Surface Duo, which doesn’t have a foldable screen, but it’s dual-screen, and we expect a revised v2 design with modern smartphone features (better cameras, 5G, NFC, etc.) later this year.
However, the market still has a long way to go. I haven’t reviewed Lenovo’s exciting ThinkPad X1 Fold yet, mainly because Windows 10 is just simply ill-suited to the concept-defying device. I also think that “defined real estate” with two screens is better than one that folds up (with the exception of the Galaxy Z Flip). Sustainability is always a concern, with 50% of people worrying about things breaking, according to YouGov. So far, we haven’t seen a lot of Android app optimizations for folding screens. or double. Pricing is also a big factor, with 37% of Americans believing the cost of over $ 1,000 is too high, and companies need to do a better job convincing people that technology isn’t just a fad like 43 % believe it now.
But it’s also clear that advancing the foldable form factor is still the goal for 2021 and beyond. Smartphone sales have rebounded this quarter, but the industry is still on the hunt for its next big thing, and all eyes are on foldables to rekindle interest – and it’s happening. Samsung Galaxy Fold3 and Z Flip 2 are slated to drop in July, Surface Duo v2 later this fall, and more are on the way.
For a deeper dive into the tech, be sure to check out MrMobile’s Into The Fold video series, which explores the state of the art in foldables, including what works and what doesn’t.
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