Welcome to the 5 tech things you should know. This is a reboot to a show I did years ago. We’ve revamped the show for a more evergreen feel, but I hope this will be a great way for you to understand what’s happening in Technology.
We’ll also be running a contest every week. This week, we’re giving away a $50 Amazon card to one lucky viewer! More information later in the show!
The foldable era is here, baby! In the next month or two, you’ll see foldable devices galore. I’ve already reported about the Samsung Fold, which is out now. But other foldable devices are coming just as fast.
We’ll show you how to navigate through fact and fiction so you can get the best device possible. So with that said, let’s get to your five tech things!
How the device folds
There will be two types of foldables – single screen, and dual screen fold. Microsoft, for example, is launching the Surface Duo, more than just a phone, it’s a 2 screen booklet that is simply a mini-PC for your note-taking, game-playing, web-surfing, Insta-gramming, and a whole bunch more need.
The Microsoft Surface Duo is 2- 5.6 inch screens that fold out like any laptop would. You can run in full tablet, laptop style, tent-style, or phone style.
The dual screens mean there’s a break in-between. These tablets won’t be able to do continuous screen, because the break might cause issues in touch, and slide.
For example, if you want to play Candy Crush, the divider could cause issues in trying to get that “Candy-licious” screen on one try.
The Samsung Galaxy Fold is out, and in this case, it’s a continuous screen. The fold is a $2k phone with an outer screen when closed, and the tablet mode screen.
Since the screen is continuous, you’ll see a “rib” in the middle. This is by design, so the screen has some leeway, and won’t break, or cause dead pixel areas.
Samsung has run tests to make sure the screen will last at least 3 years worth of folding.
The other part is that hinge on the outer side. It make the phone thicker, but more durable if you decide you want to fold it the other way.
Don’t fold it the other way…
Glass vs. Plastic
In order for the continuous screen to fold, it cannot be made of glass. We haven’t found that technology, yet.
In the Samsung case, the outer screen is glass. Huawei Mate is another continuous fold screen. These screens will most likely have a special scratch resistant coating, but it won’t be as strong as a glass screen will.
That is why you might want to consider a screen that folds into itself, rather than outside. The Xiaomi, and Royal FlexPai are two examples.
Those are nice for a tent mode, but not nice if your keys share the same pocket as your phone.
Meanwhile, LG’s upcoming foldable will be dual screen, just like the Surface Duo. One screen can become a keyboard or joystick, and it’s possible we’ll see split-screen games and apps for these specific devices.
Welcome Back Motorola RAZR
Did you have a Motorola RAZR phone? Do you miss it? Aw. Memories…
Well, it could see a rebirth, as a foldable. This would also be a continuous fold screen, so it will flip out to a 5.2 inch screen like your phone is.
These phones were also called “Clamshell” phones, so a clamshell foldable could be in your future. After all, Motorola is not the only one planning for this type of technology.
Could phones become Wearable?
Folding screens are not a new thing. I saw screen bending technology back over 10 years ago. Granted, at that time it was for computers and laptops, but now with lower LED power needs, it’s easily imagined for phones, watches, headbands, and however you might need it. (graphic)
We could even see future digital signage with mobility and bendability to it.
Will Apple have a foldable?
The quick answer is – YES. But not right now. Don’t expect iPhone 12 and 13 – or whatever they call it in the future – to have the technology.
There are two factors that Apple would probably want to see to change their minds. First would be a screen that is as durable as with the current iPhones. Otherwise, foldable glass.
Or something with a good protective coating that can also give you the “Retina” touchscreen you desire.
The iPad would have a better chance of folding way before the phone. That is the second reason why you might not see a foldable iPhone.
In fact, it might be a good way for Apple to kill off the lower end Macbooks, especially if it can be folded into a laptop style, and have a whopping 26 inch screen completely folded out.
Face it – the majority of people buy phones for one reason only. To make a better phone call…
–Oh, excuse me. I got a call – hello? No, I don’t want a free cruise to the Bahamas for extending my car insurance and sending $5,000 in for my 3 million inheritance. Thank you.
Actually, it’s about the camera. And in some cases, these foldable phones will have more cameras attached than you can ever imagine.
The screen will definitely be a second-place to how that camera works. That’s the basis on the new iPhone 11 Pro – a camera that could be a DSLR killer.
Processor, including a GPU is also important. We’ve starting moving from quad core, into Octa-core, and – uh, what’s the word for 16 cores? Hexa-Decagonal?
But high quality photos and video with enough storage to make a Storage Wars bidder want to bid high will be what people will notice most.
To keep up with this feature, my friends at Uber-Gizmo have developed the “Uber-G Camera Benchmark“. This is a score for phones and how they perform in daylight, night mode, zoom, Ultra-wide mode, and more.
And this is for any phone, so, for example, the Apple iPhone 11 Pro has a score of 177, with high marks in daylight and night time shooting.
As each phone comes in, you’ll see scores for them here. It’s a great reference if you’re looking for the right camera for the right need.
One last thing to note is Operating System. Whether you want Android, iOS, or another OS on your phone.
Of course, the majority of foldables will be Android-based, but different flavors could be coming out.
For example, the Samsung Android OS is different than the flagship Google Pixel 3 phone. If Amazon makes a foldable Fire tablet, their OS will be a “walled garden” Android device that only wants you to use approved apps from Amazon’s app store.
And yes, I know you can side-load the device. I have.
So let me be the first to welcome you into the foldable era! Your phone will get smaller, but bigger.
Did I Miss Anything?
Did I miss anything you want to know about foldables? Let me know by commenting on YouTube, or wherever you are watching this video from. Remember to subscribe, like, and hit the bell notification for future videos. Follow the 5 tech things playlist as well to check out old episodes, and see how the show has changed.