The rumors about a foldable mobile phone have been in the air for years now, but now there is an actual possibility that someone might release it in 2019. Most of the time, with the rumors like this, Samsung or Apple are the brands that come to the mind, but this time, its Huawei that might launch the foldable phone. Samsung was the first one to aim the launch of flexible Galaxy phone, but it looks like Huawei is prepared to beat it in 2019.
Technically, OLED displays are flexible as they are manufactured on flexible substrates, which is the reason there have been many demonstrations of flexible screens at trade expos, for more than 5 years. LG was the first to launch G Flex phones which could bend at a little angle without breaking. Flexible displays were not impossible to manufacture, but converting them to flexible phones was the hardest part. Foldable phones will be convenient for one hand operations while being folded up, but you could unfold it to the full display to watch videos or play games. OLED displays can fold but cannot sustain for too long in that condition. Hence, manufacturing alterations are necessary before foldable phones make sense, as the current panel can put creases on the screen or even might kill the pixels leaving dead zones on the screen. Huawei will partner BOE for upcoming OLED flexible panel. Samsung makes, if not all, almost all the screen size OLED panels in the world. BOE does not have as much capacity of Samsung which will limit the foldable phone production for Huawei.
Looking at the manufacturing capacity of BOE, the first batch of foldable phones could be as low as 20000-30000. The product won’t be marketed heavily, but Huawei can expect from the early adopters to choose the first foldable phone in the market.