Samsung has postponed the launch of the Galaxy Fold in China
Samsung has postponed its launch events for the Galaxy Fold in China. Events had been scheduled in Hong Kong for April 23 and in Shanghai for April 24, but both have now been postponed. Although no reason has yet been offered for the Hong Kong postponement, Chinese newspaper National Business Daily reports that Samsung China blamed the postponement on the local venue. A third event in the region is scheduled to take place in Taipei on April 25 although there hasn’t been any suggestion it too will be delayed as yet.
Naturally, despite the official explanation offered by Samsung China, some in the media are conflating this with the widely reported issues that some writers have experienced with their Galaxy Fold review units. Of all the reported instances of display issues, only one or two seem to be related to unexplained technical failures. The remaining display malfunctions were caused by some inadvertently removing a plastic protective layer that carries a warning not to be removed on some, but not all units shipped to date. The company has issued an official statement on the matter.
This cluster of failures has led some to call for Samsung to postpone the shipment of the devices in the US which is supposed to take place from April 26. Samsung thus far has stated that it plans to go ahead with the launch, indicating that it is confident in the technology. Critics claim that a device costing nearly US$2,000 shouldn’t be protected by simply a plastic layer. As we aren’t aware of any breakthroughs in foldable glass at the time of writing, this seems unrealistic.
The Galaxy Fold can only fold because of its plastic (polymer) non-glass substrate. Given this, it seems logical that any kind of protective layer would also be made from plastic so that it too can fold with the device. In fact, it appears that the protective layer Samsung has used is designed to be removed and replaced by a technician when it inevitably shows signs of wear. Let’s hope that the Fold launch goes ahead as planned, unless Samsung finds some genuine (non-journo inflicted) issue with the Fold. Some of the criticism so far seems a little unfair.