foldable display
Samsung is reportedly planning to launch its foldable smartphone before the year ends. Reuters/China Daily CDIC

Samsung Electronics and Huawei are in a race to launching the world’s first foldable smartphone. Interestingly, new details about their plans appear to confirm that the two could end up unveiling their devices within the same month later this year.

Industry sources revealed to South Korean news outlets this week that Samsung is likely to introduce its first foldable phone at its upcoming Samsung Developer Conference on Nov. 7-8 in San Francisco. The Investor reports that the move could be Samsung’s way of keeping its Chinese competitor in check, given that Huawei is also planning to introduce its foldable phone in the same month.

“Before the foldable smartphone hits shelves early next year, Samsung is expected to unveil details of the hardware specifications, design, user interface and user exchange at the conference,” an industry official said.

Another reason to believe that Samsung could unveil its foldable handset later this year is the fact that Samsung SDI has already succeeded in developing the world’s first optically clear adhesives, which are going to be used for the foldable panels of the upcoming smartphone.

According to industry sources, the optically clear adhesives will be used to bond foldable panels, mobile devices and touch screen displays. Aside from bonding them, the adhesives are also expected to add superior strength and durability to the moving parts and improve optical clarity and picture quality of the display panels.

“Samsung SDI will be the sole supplier of OCA tapes for Samsung. 3M may have to wait until Samsung diversifies suppliers after the phone launch,” one source disclosed to ET News on condition of anonymity.

Despite all the details that strongly suggest an earlier unveiling for Samsung’s foldable smartphone, some media outlets are still skeptical because Samsung has been postponing the launch of its highly anticipated device since early this year.

Nevertheless, it’s very likely for Samsung to keep its word this time around since mobile division chief DJ Koh already told CNBC last week that it’s about time for them to deliver the foldable phone. He even pointed out that even though the development process for the device was “complicated,” the company has “nearly concluded” it.

Based on several leaks and reports, Samsung’s foldable smartphone could be named Galaxy F. It is also believed to come with a 7.3-inch OLED primary display that folds inwards and a secondary 4.6-inch OLED screen that will be usable when the device is in its folded state.

Details about the specs of Huawei’s first foldable device are still scarce; however, the Chinese brand is determined to debut the handset later this year just like Samsung. Meanwhile, Xiaomi, Oppo, and LG are also working on their own foldable smartphones, but their models would most likely be introduced in 2019.