Thursday, September 26, 2013

Samsung to unveil smartphone with curved screen

Bend it like Samsung ... the tech giant has hinted at a day when we might fold up our smartphones.

Bend it like Samsung: The tech giant showed off a flexible smartphone screen in January. Photo: AP

Samsung are set to unveil a smartphone with a curved screen – a technological innovation aimed at maintaining its lead in a lucrative but increasingly saturated market.

Curved displays are at a nascent stage in display technology which is shifting towards flexible panels that are bendable or can even be rolled or folded.

"We will introduce a smartphone with a curved display in October," said Samsung mobile business head of strategic marketing D.J. Lee, but declined to give more details.

Samsung – the world's top maker of smartphones and TVs – unveiled prototype products with a flexible screen in January at the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas.


But it still faces a major challenge in making other handset components that can bend with the rest of the unit, such as batteries.

Curved displays are already commercially available in large-screen televisions offered by companies including Samsung and LG.

The displays are supposed to offer a more immersive viewing experience but are significantly more expensive than standard screens.

In another attempt to break new ground, Samsung earlier this month unveiled a smart watch called Galaxy Gear, which can take photos and videos, make or take phone calls and or check emails.

Wearable technology and computers, including Google Glass, is considered the next frontier in consumer electronics following smartphones.

The watch received some scathing reviews, along with complaints that it only worked in conjunction with Samsung's latest oversized smartphone, the Galaxy Note III.

The Gear and the Galaxy Note III will hit stores in some 140 nations, including Australia, by the end of October, and Samsung executives said they were confident the critics could be won over.

"We received so much criticism when we first unveiled the Galaxy Note series ... but it has created a whole new market segment for oversized smartphones," said Lee Young-Hee, executive vice president of Samsung's mobile unit.

D.J. Lee said the watch would be made connectable with other Samsung devices such as the flagship Galaxy S3 and S4 smartphones by the end of the year.

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