If 2020 was a year when we saw some actionin foldable smartphone space, it seems in 2021 we will see rollable smartphones moving from prototype or concept stage to mass production stage. The rollable smartphones are back in the news courtesy of LG who at their Consumer Electronic Event revealed the very first look at their version of a rollable smartphone called LG Rollable.
I said their version because Oppo has already revealed the Oppo Find X 2021 which is also a rollable smartphone but it seems LG will beat Oppo to the punch and becomes the first company to launch a commercially available rollable smartphone to the masses.
Anyway, For the last two years, it’s been an open secret that LG has been working on a smartphone with a rollable screen, they even teased it at their LG Wing event a few months ago and today finally they show cased what it looks like albeit partially.
It seems LG will keep a separate dedicated event to showcase this new revolutionary form factor of a device. With that said, The technology used in rollable smartphones looks a bit more practical from a consumer’s perspective as compared to a Foldable display.
Unlike the Galaxy Z Fold 2, which pairs atall and narrow external display with a spacious interior one, the Rollable’s single screen is the same size as a traditional smartphone display at least, before it mechanically unfurlsto the size of a small tablet.
This means the rollable smartphones will not have one of the biggest problems the foldable phones have, the crease. But at the same time, rollable smartphones have a big problem of their own.
So you need to protect it and be careful withit all the time. Samsung’s foldable phones have a clever design where they hide the fragile display inside from the external elements when not in use when you close it. But the same is not going to be the case with the rollable smartphones. I mean it’s exposed all the time whether or not you are using it.
Say if you accidentally put the phone in your pocket with keys then the display is going to get damaged. So even though, rollable smartphones are visually way more tantalizing than foldable smartphones, the latter is actually much more practicalin nature.
This isn’t to say that there’s no scope for improvement. I’m sure with improvements in technology, the rollable smartphones will get better. Just like how foldable smartphones have evolved from the Galaxy Fold to the Z Fold 2 in just a year with things like Ultra-thin glass, sweepers for hinge mechanism, and more.
To be honest, I’m a fan of rollable smartphones and I’m rooting for LG to make this a great product that sets a benchmark for others to improve upon. I’m sure Samsung is working on their own version of rollable phones as well so the technology will improve at a much faster rate when bigdogs enter this segment. Anyway, props to LG for making smartphones interesting again with their explorer project. Last year with the LG Wing, this year with the rollable, I hope LG finds that lost success with this new path.