Samsung’s Galaxy Fold relaunch was delayed after the foldable device received numerous reports of display defects. After some repair time and little word on a relaunch, sources say that Samsung will re-release the Galaxy Fold at the end of July, next month.
Confirming the news on behalf of Samsung is Samsung Electronics executive Roh Tae-moon, who, at the end of the last Samsung conference recently said, “We are now in the position to launch Galaxy Fold,” meaning that all the problems with the display have been resolved.
Samsung Electronics President D.J. Koh has said that Samsung is negotiating for a July release but that, if possible, the Galaxy Fold may relaunch alongside the Galaxy Note 10 (which hints at a possible August 2019 release).
The re-release date for the Galaxy Fold has been shrouded in mystery. The device was unveiled on February 20th, but was canceled by Samsung before its April 26th launch date due to reviewer complaints. The Korean juggernaut sent out review units early in anticipation of the product’s official market release, but reviewers complained their units were breaking after two days in their possession.
Some reviewers peeled off the polyamide film, a protective layer, presuming it was a screen protector they could remove and/or replace at whim. Other issues pertain to the display hinge that left room for dust, dirt, and other particles to invade it.
Once Samsung discovered reviewer units were a problem, the company recalled them and promised to get to the bottom of the situation. At that time, the date “June 13th” was supplied on carrier websites and assumed to be the date of the Fold’s relaunch. Unfortunately, Best Buy and AT&T canceled their Fold shipping promises, and the June 13th date was revealed as nothing more than a placeholder.
AT&T promised its Galaxy Fold pre-order customers that they’d receive a $100 promo gift card for their troubles, though the gift card will arrive in two billing cycles instead of the immediate future.
Just this month, an unnamed Samsung employee said that he’d received no word on a planned re-release of the Galaxy Fold this month, that, if Samsung had such an event planned, he and others should have learned about it before now. This reveals that, contrary to the placeholder, a June re-release wasn’t planned but could have been there merely to keep up expectations.
It may have been a marker for Samsung to have its display problems waxed out by then. Thankfully, the display problems and flaws have been fixed and the Galaxy Fold will relaunch this year instead of a year or two from now.
Samsung’s Galaxy Fold is an all-in-one device, a phone when you need a small, portable screen to make calls, and a large tablet device when you need larger screen real estate for more productivity. Samsung filed its first patents for foldable displays back in 2011, meaning the Korean giant has been working on its unique product for some eight years now. Other companies such as Huawei, piggybacking on Samsung’s idea, intend to launch their own foldable smartphones to respond to the Galaxy Fold.
Huawei has said it would launch its foldable Mate X smartphone later this year, but then retreated due to the issues with the Galaxy Fold. At the same time, Huawei is under a massive economic war with the US in the current US-China Trade War, a political battle that has seen American and American-friendly entities pull away from the Shenzhen-based OEM.
Huawei’s loss of business with American companies, its smartphone sales declines in Germany and Spain (among others), and the decline in consumer confidence lead to a delayed Mate X launch because company monies must be used elsewhere.
Whereas Samsung’s Galaxy Fold closes inward, Huawei’s Mate X closes outward, leaving little room to trap dust and particles under a folding hinge, for example.