It has been a few months since we first heard rumors of a Pixel Fold – a folding screen phone with Google’s software on the inside – and the internet has been pretty quiet about it since. Jon Prosser was the first to give us a bit of info on the upcoming device, simply proclaiming that the device was indeed real and his tweet was followed up and corroborated by display analyst Ross Young who suggests a Q4 2021 launch of this folding-display phone.
Apart from that, we don’t really have much to go on, here. There were rumblings that Google is sourcing flexible OLED panels from Samsung in the 7.6-inch size, similar to what Samsung currently uses in its Galaxy Fold 2 phone. If this is to be believed, we have at least enough info to put together a rough idea of what the presumably-named Pixel Fold would be like. Inward-folding OLED phone with Google software? Yes please!
New info has emerged
In the past few days, however, more info that points to some sort of Google-made, folding phone has emerged in the form of Google reportedly sourcing not just flexible OLED from Samsung, but their proprietary ultra-thin glass as well. That’s right, it would seem that Google is also tapping Samsung to get flexible glass coverings for their OLED panels in the Pixel Fold.
While this info doesn’t change the legitimacy of a folding Pixel, it does make it far more likely that Google is indeed moving forward with a foldable of its own. It’s an audacious move for a company that hasn’t exactly nailed the high-end phone thus far. We could argue that the upcoming Pixel 6 and Pixel 6 Pro might change that, but until those phones show up, we have to judge Google’s phone hardware on devices that have actually materialized.
Don’t get me wrong, I’m 100% in favor of a foldable Pixel. I’m just not 100% sure Google can pull off this sort of hardware flex. Samsung has put years of R&D into this effort and apart from Huawei, there’s no one else even close to getting the hardware right in this space. I find it tough to believe that Google is going to show up out of the blue this fall with a folding Pixel that is a fantastic piece of hardware. If they’ve yet to nail the basic slab-style smartphone, a proper foldable seems a tad bit unrealistic.
Be that as it may, I’m rooting for them. While I’m 100% getting in line to pick up the Pixel 6 Pro, I’d be just as intruiged by a folding smartphone/tablet with Google’s software on board. Samsung’s bloated software turned me off of the first two Galaxy Folds, but that doens’t mean I’m not absolutely itching to have a phone-sized tablet on me at all times. If Google can figure out how to make it work and work well, they could have a massive hit on their hands. Either way, I suppose we’ll know soon enough, right?
VIA: Android Central