Samsung Delays the Galaxy Fold Launch After Display Failures [u]

Samsung has canceled its Chinese events for the upcoming launch of the Galaxy Fold device.

According to a new report from Reuters, Samsung has postponed the launch events it had planned for the Galaxy Fold it has scheduled for this week in China, but the Korean company says this is not due to the recent hardware issues that have put the phone in the spotlight.

The announcement comes not long after several reports of broken devices. One from a Bloomberg review last week reported that the display failed to operate properly after a plastic protective layer was removed.

The incidents with the Fold’s plastic screen have caused controversy among tech-lovers on the internet, casting doubt on the durability of Samsung’s $2,000 USD foldable phone and on the concept of bendable devices in general.

When the first wave of reports regarding faulty displays on the Galaxy Fold surfaced, Samsung was quick to issue a statement confirming that it would not delay the Galaxy Fold’s launch — but that was in the United States. That’s because all of the reports of breakages stemmed from there, and for the most part, their demise was due to user negligence.

In the meantime, it looks like the company has already resolved the protective layer issue with an additional warning on top of the screen.

“Attention: the main screen includes a special protective layer. Peeling off the protective layer or using any adhesives on the main screens, such as screen protectors or stickers, may cause damage,” the new warning reads.

For now, Samsung plans to keep its US release date set for April 26 with sales beginning in South Korea and Europe in May. Chinese markets will gain access to the Galaxy Fold on a still undisclosed date.

Update: The WSJ says the Galaxy Fold launch delay has now also reached the USA:

Samsung Electronics Co. is delaying the expected Friday rollout of its Galaxy Fold smartphone until at least next month, according to people familiar with the matter—after tech reviewers reported their test devices had malfunctioned.

The Galaxy Fold phone—priced at nearly $2,000 and the industry’s first mainstream foldable-screen device—was slated to hit shelves this week in the U.S. But problems with phones being used by reviewers have changed those plans, the people said.

Update 2: Samsung has now officially delayed the Galaxy Fold–here’s their full statement (via CNBC):

We recently unveiled a completely new mobile category: a smartphone using multiple new technologies and materials to create a display that is flexible enough to fold. We are encouraged by the excitement around the Galaxy Fold.

While many reviewers shared with us the vast potential they see, some also showed us how the device needs further improvements that could ensure the best possible user experience.

To fully evaluate this feedback and run further internal tests, we have decided to delay the release of the Galaxy Fold. We plan to announce the release date in the coming weeks.

Initial findings from the inspection of reported issues on the display showed that they could be associated with impact on the top and bottom exposed areas of the hinge. There was also an instance where substances found inside the device affected the display performance.

We will take measures to strengthen the display protection. We will also enhance the guidance on care and use of the display including the protective layer so that our customers get the most out of their Galaxy Fold.

We value the trust our customers place in us and they are always our top priority. Samsung is committed to working closely with customers and partners to move the industry forward. We want to thank them for their patience and understanding.

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