Header image: James Bareham, The Verge
At what feels like a simultaneous time, multiple tech journalists are reporting their Samsung Galaxy Fold review units are spontaneously breaking. Specifically, the flexible screen on the Fold (literally its biggest selling point) is malfunctioning and no one seems to know why.
That might be a bit of an exaggeration, but not really. Take Dieter Bohn at The Verge for example. His review unit suffered from what he presumes is a piece of debris that somehow crept its way under the display. It might be molding clay, it might be dust, it might be a crumb. Bohn doesn’t exactly how what might’ve caused this weird bulge under the screen. Whatever it was, it was hard enough to break his screen.
Mark Gurman over at Bloomberg is also having a serious problem with the Fold’s screen. After just two days of use, it became completely unusable. The same thing happened to Steve Kovach at CNBC and Marques Brownlee.
Besides Dieter Bohn, it appears problems start with the Galaxy Fold’s screen when you remove a certain layer of the display. Samsung ships the phone with what’s called a “polymer layer,” something that isn’t designed to be removed. When Brownlee began removing his, the screen instantly began spazzing out. It looks like that’s the same case with Gurman.
Kovach at CNBC doesn’t specify whether removing the film was enough for his screen to malfunction. He only goes as far to say he simply “unfolded it” and it began whacking out.
In the end, it isn’t clear what’s making all of these Galaxy Fold review units malfunction. Removing the polymer layer is a bad idea, as we’ve learned, but neither Kovach or Bohn tore it off their units before they shut down. Whatever the cause, it’s a bad look for Samsung who is gonna try really hard to sell you a foldable $2,000 phone in just a few days. Hopefully, these issues get ironed out. Otherwise, the company’s in pretty deep.