Samsung: Our mid-range phones will get cutting-edge features before our flagships

Gerardo Harmon
September 5, 2018

The Android industry as a whole has overhyped the concept of foldable smartphones to the point of near exhaustion, but none is a worse offender than Samsung.

Samsung's DJ Koh, the CEO of the firm's mobile division, has said that a foldable smartphone will be launched later this year.

More than just a tablet-like device, Koh hinted that the new smartphone will have unique features to differentiate itself from standard smartphones and their larger tablet counterparts. "But when you need to browse or see something, then you may need to unfold it", Koh told CNBC.

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The experience of using a foldable phone, Koh says should be different from how consumers use a tablet and would need to do something better.

Koh admitted that while the development process for the bendy phone has been "complicated", the company has "nearly concluded" it. Typically, Samsung starts shipping its phones a couple of weeks after the launch event which means we could see the device in shops by mid November.

This time around, however, Samsung can't afford to postpone the phone again, as Huawei is equally interested in announcing a foldable of its own.

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We had thought that perhaps we'd be seeing that device at IFA, rather than the Mate 20 Lite, which is launching in the United Kingdom tomorrow.

Compared to Samsung's 2018 flagships, the Galaxy S10 line should debut in-screen fingerprint readers and possibly even feature a depth-sensing 3D camera setup. It wouldn't be a Samsung Galaxy Note because the latest in Samsung's Note series, Note 9, was unveiled last month. When folded, the device will also have a smaller visible front display, with cameras on the back.

Smartphones have become a bit predictable in the past few years, leaving consumers craving something new to send them running to stores for an upgrade. "So when the end customer uses it, (they think) "wow, this is the reason Samsung made it".

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