Shortly after Samsung announced the delay of its Galaxy Fold handset in light of display issues, teardown experts at iFixit explained that the problems might be a result of the design itself. Samsung is understandably unhappy with its faults being put on public display while it’s trying to fix the complications, successfully requesting a retraction of the exposé.
Initial impressions of the Galaxy Fold were relatively positive for an early entry into foldable devices, with many praising the versatility of its design and seamless transition between smartphone and tablet modes. Unfortunately, this came to an abrupt halt just days later when technology journalists began detailing device-breaking faults with screen.
Diving into a review model of the Galaxy Fold, a teardown from boffins over at iFixit determined that there were several design flaws to look out for. Most notably, there is a 7mm gap in the spine's bezel underneath where the crease sits, allowing debris to infiltrate and break the flexible OLED panel. This, paired with a questionable fixed screen protector that can’t be removed, glued glass and two batteries split between each side scored it a 2 in repairability rating.
Originally scheduled for release today, Samsung announced that it was delaying its Galaxy Fold device worldwide in order to improve the design. Furthermore, it requested the removal of the teardown from the partner that provided iFixit with the device. Although the publication states that it is under no obligation to comply, it has done so “out of respect for this partner.”
Samsung has a history of trying to censor negative content, having issued multiple takedown requests amidst the Galaxy Note 7 controversy. This time however, the company is trying to improve the $2,000 smartphone before it reaches the hands of customers.
KitGuru Says: iFixit’s whole mission is to highlight bad design and repairability so that customers receive the best possible bang for buck in future devices. Personally, I’d like it if this was a common practice ahead of release so that handsets are in tip top shape before coming to market.