The story of the Samsung Galaxy X folding flexible OLED smartphone is becoming something of a saga now, as we’ve been seeing reports for several years that it’s effectively “just around the corner”, always promised for the subsequent year, yet never materialising. For much of last year, it was said it would arrive inside 2018, but it’s pretty clear by now that’s no longer on the cards. It was the same inside 2016 talking about 2017. And on it goes.
So you’ll have to forgive us being somewhat sceptical about the latest blurb from the interwebs claiming the Galaxy X will arrive inside early 2019. We know Samsung showcased a working prototype at CES 2018, but even so, it’s been showcasing prototype flexible displays and talking up the folding phone concept for nearly a decade now. I mean, I remember covering this idea when I first became a tech journalist about seven years ago.
The kicker in this latest story is the price point. According to the sources the Galaxy X could cost as much as $1850, making it the most expensive phone Samsung has ever produced. That said, it appears to potentially fulfil a dual-role as a tablet when unfolded, and well-specced tablet prices have traditionally been towards the higher end of the smartphone segment simply on the hiked price of larger screen real-estate alone. It’s thought the folded display size in the handset’s “phone mode” will be 4.5in, but it will fold out to a 7.5in tablet mode. Reportedly, production of the components for the Galaxy X will begin in November 2018 with a view to the early 2019 launch.
Previous reports indicated the Galaxy X could be a very limited run handset, and only within a test bed that could even be restricted in sale to just Samsung’s home turf of South Korea. This would be similar to the Galaxy Note Edge from several years ago, which was effectively a test run for curved Edge displays which later became the norm on Samsung flagships.
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