I know, I know: it is not common, here in MacMagazine, we cover a competition launch so deeply. It turns out that the Galaxy Fold it is far from a common launch: it is, despite all the flaws and problems, a glimpse of the future and of a technology that, eventually, may be adopted even by Apple. Therefore, there is nothing more fair than following your saga – especially now, that the people of iFixit he put his hands on a copy of the device.
The website’s mission was, of course, to find out if there were any design flaws in the Galaxy Fold that caused the defects in a series of devices shipped to specialized vehicles and testers. As expected, the problems were detected – and they correspond to the hypotheses previously raised by vehicles like the The Verge.
Basically, the Galaxy Fold’s “fatal flaw” is in a gap of approximately 7mm at the top and bottom of the fold, exactly where the edges that protect the screen meet. This opening is completely unprotected, allowing dust, debris and liquids to enter, which sooner or later (more likely sooner, as we saw in the testers), will cause catastrophic damage to the screen.
The problem extends to the very nature of OLED technology: the pixels that make up this type of panel are fragile. In common devices, the glass protection is in charge of protecting them from the weather and impacts, but in the case of the Galaxy Fold, we have none of that; what is there is a plastic coating and a mechanism that folds and unfolds these pixels thousands of times throughout its life, which decreases their durability. Adding that to the device’s susceptibility to collecting debris, we have a recipe for disaster.
Samsung will have quite a challenge to redesign the Galaxy Fold until its new release date – apparently, June 13, as informed by CNET based on an email distributed by the American operator AT&T – but not yet officially confirmed by the South Korean.
As a curiosity, iFixit gave the Galaxy Fold a rating of 2/10 in its “repairability” index. The company praised the fact that the device was easily opened with a simple Philips screwdriver, as well as the modularity of various internal components. The criticisms, in addition to the extreme fragility, were due to the difficulty in changing the batteries and the use of glue to fix the screens of the device.
Is there salvation for the device of the future?