Talking tech since 2003

Last month we started to see real-world examples of gadgets with curved displays from Samsung. Only days before that, rival manufacturer LG announced its intention to start making devices with flexible displays in items like “automotive displays, tablets and wearable devices.” Not one to be outpaced by the competition, a presentation slide from Samsung has been revealed on the web, and points to plans for “bended” devices to start rolling out in 2014 and 2015, with “foldable” devices hopefully to follow in 2016 and beyond.

The scoop comes from SammyHub, which reports that the slide comes from Samsung Analyst Day, which is happening right now. As you can see in the image above, 2013 already has curved devices—which we saw in the above-linked posts for the Galaxy Curve. Devices with truly bendable displays, which, I suppose are basically able to wiggle one way or another, are already within grasp.

If Samsung’s product plans are anything like LG’s, that means that the next iteration of Galaxy Gear may be more than just a tiny smartphone with wrist-straps—more than likely, it could be a flexible, round display—a fashionable and transparent refugee from science fiction movies. It could be extremely cool—or super goofy looking. We’ll have to wait and see what gets made, I guess.

As for foldable displays? The image above notes that there are “technology barriers” keeping Samsung from creating such devices, which it hopes to overcome sometime between 2015 and 2016. That raises a couple questions: what, exactly, are those barriers; and what, exactly, could you build with a foldable display?

Are we talking “smart-wallets”? Weird combo phone-wallets that I can fold up into my pocket, make calls with, and keep my money inside of? I’m really kind of at a loss for what else I might need that can fold and let me watch movies—but then, that’s why I don’t work at a big tech company. If I could imagine such things, I’d probably be a lot richer.

What do you think? Foldable displays? What kind of crazy products might that allow to come into being?

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