Posted on : Sunday 8th March 2020 06:56 AM
Samsung Electronics Co. aims to bump up annual shipments of its next-generation foldable phone due out in the first half next year to 5 million units from this year’s modest 500,000 rollout through the use of revolutionary glass display.
The world’s largest smartphone maker has notified its suppliers of plans to ramp up Galaxy Fold production to 5 million units in 2020, up from this year`s 500,000, according to industry sources on Tuesday.
Samsung’s planned 5 million-unit target for next year is just 1.7 percent of its total annual output of 300 million smartphones. But the pace of mass production has beat market estimates, which projected total foldable phone shipments including those by rivals to reach 5 million units next year and 35 million by 2023. The world’s biggest smartphone maker is also expected to replace the Galaxy Fold’s current plastic screen with a sturdier glass display, according to sources.
Samsung had to put on hold the launch date of its pioneering flagship Galaxy Fold earlier this year after some reviewers reported problems with the plastic screen. The glitch turned out to be due to a protective film that caused the screen to malfunction when removed. But the Fold continued to run into screen issues even after its official rollout in September.
The upcoming Galaxy Fold 2 is expected to overcome this problem by ditching the current polyimide display for ultra-durable tempered glass that is capable of bending, sources said.
Samsung’s second-generation Fold is expected to be a clamshell design, unlike the vertical fold of the original handset. The display is also said to be smaller at 6.7 inches compared with the original’s 7.3 inches. Reports show that the Galaxy S11 Plus, which will feature a bigger display and camera with 5x optical zoom, is set to be released early next year. The Galaxy Fold 2 is expected to come out later in the second quarter to avoid direct competition with the Galaxy S11.
Samsung’s plan to add a stylus pen to its future Fold devices still needs more work due to screen durability issues, according to a company official.