Samsung Boss Admits Rushing Galaxy Fold Launch

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Launch flop of hugely expensive folding smartphone ’embarrassing’, admits CEO of Samsung

The boss of Samsung has admitted that the delayed launch of its groundbreaking folding smartphone, was ’embarrassing.’

The admission came from co-CEO DJ Koh speaking the about Galaxy Fold smartphone, that had been slated to arrive in US shops on 26 April and in the UK on 3 May. The price was a hefty $2,000 (£1,800).

But Samsung was forced to postpone the launch after early reviewers reported faults with the folding display, which halted media events for the device in the Far East.

Samsung’s DJ Koh at the launch even for the Galxy Fold and Galaxy S10. Image credit: Samsung

Rushed launch

Essentially, a number of reviewers found one or both halves of the folding screen began flickering and finally died after less than 48 hours of use.

Samsung had claimed the revolutionary device had been tested to withstand 200,000 folds in its lifetime, or more than 100 folds per day for five years.

But DJ Koh reportedly said he pushed the Galaxy Fold to market “before it was ready,” leading to the device’s delay just days before it was supposed to ship out to customers. “It was embarrassing,” Koh told a small group of reporters, the Independent reported.

Samsung had first revealed the Galaxy Fold to the world earlier this year and was under pressure to bring it to market ahead of rivals Huawei and Xiaomi.

But Samsung admitted that in some cases damage to the folding screen may have been caused by “impact on the top and bottom exposed areas of the hinge”.

It also found that “substances found inside the device” may have affected display performance.

These substances are thought to include dust and fluff getting in between the two screens.

In an apparently separate issue, some reviewers also peeled away a protective layer of plastic from the front of the screen that was intended to remain in place, thinking it was a temporary screen protector, when in fact it was part of the screen.

Fixed fold?

Samsung has spent the time since then ironing out the faults.

Samsung Display VP Kim Seong-cheol was reportedly quoted as saying that the Galaxy Fold is almost ready to launch and that most of the problems have been fixed.

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Author: Tom Jowitt
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