Foldable phones find footing as Samsung and Huawei unveil new devices

SAMSUNG AND HUAWEI have both announced futuristic foldable phones: the Samsung Galaxy Fold and the Huawei Mate X respectively. The concept of a foldable smartphone isn’t a new one, with the Royole FlexPai having already been released, and talks of a new baby in the Motorola RAZR family.

However, of these two, Samsung was the first to show off its latest innovation. The Galaxy Fold was launched at the 2019 Samsung Unpacked event, along with a range of Galaxy S10 smartphones. The Fold has a 4.6in Super AMOLED HD+ display which unfolds to a 7.3in screen with Dynamic AMOLED. The 4380mAh battery would be pretty hefty for your standard flagship, but it’ll be interesting to see how it copes with having to power the larger AMOLED screen.

The Galaxy Fold is set to release with a Snapdragon 855 processor and 12GB RAM. You can expect 512GB storage as standard, but there’s no SD slot. And, of course, Samsung has kicked Jack in the balls once again, so if you want to use headphones, they’ll need a USB-C connector or Bluetooth.

Naturally, the main camera is a triple lens setup, with two 12MP snappers and a 16MP ultrawide lens. You’ll also get a dual selfie camera (so we can see your neckbeard in all its glory) and a 10MP cover camera to boot.

With regards to aesthetics…it’s a bit of a “meh” phone. The cover screen is tiny compared to the body of the phone, so it has an enormous five-head (that’s one bigger than a forehead, for you ignorant folks) as well as a huge chin. And yes, the Bluefire team know that’s it’s because of the inner aspect ratio blah, blah…

One giant thing you literally cannot ignore, however, is the humongous notch in the top corner of the large screen when the phone is folded out. I just want to know who looked at that and said: “Yeah, that’ll do”.

The phone doesn’t even fold flush. It’s more like the empty binder a nervous teenager takes with them to their first day of “big school”.

Oh, and it’ll cost you £1500.

So, what about Huawei?

The Huawei Mate X was announced at day two of 2019’s Mobile World Congress. Unlike the Galaxy, Huawei’s take on the flexi-phone has the fold-out display wrapping around the outside of the phone, which avoids the abhorrent bezels on the smaller screen.

The Huawei Mate X, however, doesn’t have a cover screen like the Samsung, but the phone acts as a normal Android device when shut. The design also means that the Huawei folds flat and is thinner than the Samsung. When closed, the large screen is 6.8in and the smaller screen is 6.6in. When open, the display is a whopping 8in from corner to corner, and has no notch.

Instead, the cameras are located on a bar that runs along the edge of the smaller screen. This sticks out a little when the phone is unfolded, but could provide some extra grip if needed. This does mean, however, that you can’t use the unfolded screen to take selfies, but whether or not this will matter in practice is a discussion to be had in the future.

One critic on Twitter remarked that the seam between the two screens was visible when unfolded. We must say, however, that the Mate X is light years away from what we thought the Huawei foldable phone would look like.

The battery has a capacity of 4500mAh, which can allegedly charge to 80% in 30 minutes with Huawei’s new SuperCharge technology. You’ll also get 8GB of RAM and 512GB of storage for you money.

Your money, by the way, is about £2000…

What do they have in common?

You won’t be surprised to hear that both phones charge via USB-C. But you might find it interesting that each has two batteries. That’s right, both the Galaxy Fold and the Mate X have batteries behind both screens. They should still charge quickly, however.

Both are also 5G compatible, so we should see incredible download speeds on both somewhere in the near future. However, 5G is also coming to cheaper mobiles, so 5G and a hinge are not one and the same.

We at Bluefire are interested to see whether the foldable trend really catches on, or whether it’ll fall flat.
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P.S. No, you can’t wrap either of them around your… and set them to vibrate, you filthy human.

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