Monday, 7 October 2013

LG G Flex incoming - but what's the point in a bendy phone?


LG G Flex incoming - but what's the point in a bendy phone?

We’ve heard that LG has been working on flexible screen tech for some time now, and now the South Korean company says it’s ready to start production of its first bendy phone, which is set to be called the G Flex, beating Samsung to the punch in the process. LG’s brand new blower is nearly here, but what’s the point in a phone that bends anyway? Smartphones with 3D screens never took off, but this isn’t just another tech gimmick: here are a few reasons why flexible gizmos will be the next big thing.

Imagine a phone that starts small but can fold out to be even bigger

Remember the days of folding out a map to figure out where you’re going? That unravelling motion could soon make a come back with bendy displays, letting your pocket-sized phone fold out to a super-slate. It’s still early doors with the tech at the moment, but in the future you could see phones that fold out like a clamshell, without the ugly visible hinge in the middle. Take the Kyocera Echo, for instance, a dual-screened, folding Android phone that lets you use both screens as one: imagine that with a seamless, singular, flexible screen instead. Bendy screens just open up even more possibilities – your next newspaper could rock a folding E Ink display, for instance. Of course, we’ll need to invent flexible batteries and processors too – but this is the direction we’re heading.

It’s perfect for smartwatches

Small curved displays make for the perfect tech to sling around your wrist. We’ve even seen concept examples from the likes of Samsung in the past, but rumours are now circulating that Apple will be using similar screens for its smartwatch. With flexible displays steadily making improvements, and smartwatches currently all the rage, you could see the next-gen Galaxy Gear or Sony Smart Watch packing in a curved display to give your more screen space and a comfier fit.

Never smash your screen again

In addition to being bendy, flexible displays are also a lot more durable – potentially even unbreakable – meaning you can say goodbye to smashed screens. They can roll, they can fold, and they can survive a lot more than your traditional, brittle glass touchscreen too. That means you won’t have to deal with yet another scratched-up display, or fork out a premium to get it replaced.

Fit it anywhere

Phones are getting bigger and bigger these days, and that means that you might not be able to fit your phone in your pocket – and sooner rather than later if you’re into skinny jeans. That could change thanks to flexible screen tech: in time, you’ll be able to bend the whole phone and stuff it into your pocket better than a whole, rigid six-inch phone. As it’s flexible, it’ll contour to the shape of your leg too, so it’ll be a perfect fit into your pocket each and every time. And one day, when bendy screens mature even more, you’ll be able to just fold up your phone into a size that could even fit into your smallest jean pocket – yes, the one that no one seems to know is for.

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