2019 was supposed to be the year of the foldable phones. Thanks to Samsung’s failed launch of the Galaxy Fold and Huawei’s delay of their Mate X folding smartphone, it appears that the world may have to wait a little longer to see if there really is a future in foldable devices. Many of the issues with the idea, that Samsung’s Galaxy Fold highlighted, revolve around problematic hinges and screens that can’t support the constant wear and tear of the folding itself. Something that is important in a device where this is touted as its biggest feature.
Huawei though is confident that they have solved these problems as they have used their extra development time to improve on the original prototype’s design and given it a better hinge, tougher screen and even more power ahead of what the company is confident will still be a Q1 2020 release in Europe.
This news came as Richard Yu, leader of Huawei’s consumer business, spoke to Frandroid during a trip to Huawei’s headquarters. The company doesn’t go on to reveal exactly what they’ve changed or how they’ve improved on their original design, though it is believed that nothing has changed with the core design premise itself and the screen will still appear on both sides when folded. Arguably the more visually appealing of the approaches we have seen thus far, though also the most fragile
The company appears committed to making the dream of a foldable phone work and have already released a model of their Mate X to China for as much as $2400. We don’t have any feedback yet on how it is performing in that market given its high price point or even if the device’s quality is better than that of Samsung’s. The release of a new and improved Mate X though in Europe will probably be the first indication we will get of whether Huawei has found a winner or perhaps just created yet another expensive doorstop like Samsung.
Last Updated: December 19, 2019