ByLinky Johnson 2019-04-25 1759
After the debacle surrounding the brand-dangerous Galaxy Note 7, Samsung now has the next major smartphone glitch in just two years. The Galaxy Fold was to become the first smartphone with a foldable display from a large manufacturer, pre-production models were already at the mercy, the official sales start was firmly planned. But there were numerous problemswith the first test devices, from half to quite fancy displays to flickering displays to unexplained bumps in the display.
While Samsung is currently recalling all test equipment and has postponed the start of sales indefinitely, everyone is wondering how such a fiasco could occur. The experts of "Ifixit" have also given their thoughts on this-they see premonitions confirmed and the explanatory approaches should also give other manufacturers pause for thought.
Perhaps the most important point: OLED screens, as used in most high-end smartphones these days, are sensitive. They are better than LCDs in many respects, but they are also very susceptible and do not like oxygen and moisture at all. Even the smallest cracks and damage in the coating can lead to total failure.
That there might be problems with the Galaxy Fold's OLED was therefore foreseeable, according to Ifixit author Kevin Purdy. Close-ups of the test devices, such as at "The Verge," show gaps and crevices on the hinge through which dust and dirt particles can easily penetrate the interior of the smartphone if no "magic membrane" prevents that, explains Ifixit chief tinker Sam Lionheart. That Samsung's Galaxy Fold does not have IP certification suggests that such protection is lacking.
That would also explain the bump beneath the display that "The Verge" writer Dieter Bohn, among others, has observed at his test device. It could therefore be the source that small parts, such as dirt particles, have found their way into the device door through the folding hinge and push against the OLED panel from behind.
That a protective film on display was pulled off by some testers, despite being essential to an intact display, is another vexing glitch to shove into the careless testers ' shoes. But this also shows how sensitive the OLED, which is installed in the Galaxy Fold, is: It is enough to peel off the protective film, as many testers make immediately out of habit with a new smartphone, in order to make it through contact with the hands and fingernails and through uneven Pressure on OLED to destroy the display.
That Samsung has not recognized these vulnerabilities before is negligent. It also probably has to do with the fact that the folding mechanism has been tested by robots. Samsung's robots have made the hinge up and going 200,000 times without glitches. But they did not behave humanely. Each opens and closes the fold differently, putting uneven pressure on different parts of the device in the process, explains Ifixit author Purdy.
The stresses a device like the Galaxy Fold has to endure in everyday life, no robot can realistically simulate, and that's the problem. The folding itself doesn't matter to the devices. But even small dirt and dust particles under the display or uneven pressure can make the device create. Another problem is that the Ifixit experts see in the fact that there is no clear buckle line in the middle of the display. This is more aesthetic, but it can also cause the display to shift slightly.
How Samsung wants to get to grips with the problems is completely open. In a brief statement , the manufacturer assures that it will strengthen the protection and stability of the display and better inform its customers about the use and protection of the display. However, these vulnerabilities stem from design flaws and may not be easy to fix without revising the design, thus stomping the first generation of the Galaxy Fold into it before the official sales launch. For Huawei, which plans to launch its Mate X in July, the case should be a lesson.
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