According to new rumors, Samsung, still stinging after the Note7 recall debacle, is determined to be the first to release a foldable smartphone. According to ET News, the company is going to begin prototype production of their always-rumored but never-seen folding smartphone in the third quarter of this year.
Of course, we heard that last year, too.
According to BGR, the foldable smartphone will have a "luxurious design" and be a blend of a tablet and a "pocketable" phone that folds in half. The phone would open like a book, transforming from a regular old phone into a 7-inch tablet.
This YouTube video from 2014 shows off the concept:
According to these reports, several thousand early models of the foldable smartphone will be dispersed amongst Samsung's major partners to test the ability of the design before going ahead with mass production, potentially in 2018. They're hoping to beat other early models of foldable smartphones and tablets such as the folding screen Lenovo showed off at CES in 2016, and other foldable displays from companies like BOE, Visionox, and AUO.
If all goes well, Samsung plans to expand the idea of foldable displays to its other products. Since the Consumer Electronics Show in 2011, Samsung has been talking about creating a bendable display. Then again in 2013, when they named the flexible display "Youm." Recently, there was talk that Samsung would release its foldable smartphone as a Galaxy X.