Can Samsung's Curved Smartphone Dethrone iPhone 5S, iPhone 5C?
Samsung (OTC: SSNLF) is willing to develop any and all phone concepts into an actual product.
This week the company officially unveiled the world's first curved smartphone, the Galaxy Round.
Contrary to the name, the Galaxy Round uses the same rectangular shape that has been adopted by every other smartphone on the market. The front and back are slightly curved, however, which makes it slightly rounder than the average handset.
According to CNET, the display is indeed flexible, as early reports claimed. But the resulting phone is not flexible. The shell is hard, so consumers won't have the luxury of squishing the phone into small spaces.
Samsung is touting one primary benefit provided by the Galaxy Round: tilt interactions. When the handset is idle and sitting on a table, users can tilt it slightly to view the date, time, missed calls and remaining battery life. For a demonstration of how this works, see the video clip below.
Users will also be able to tilt the device to view photos and videos, and swipe (Samsung refers to it as a "short press") the screen to change music tracks.
For some users, these features may be viewed as gimmicks that were designed to take advantage of a phone that isn't that different from the zillions of Galaxy devices already on the market.
For others, it may be an opportunity to get a piece of the future.
Over the next five to 10 years, smartphone manufacturers will likely release the first flexible smartphone. At its core, this product will contain a flexible display that allows the users to bend the device -- and ensure that it won't break if it falls.
Until then, Samsung has decided to jump ahead and release a curved smartphone that was built with a flexible screen. For the right consumer (ex: those who plan to purchase a curved high-def TV), this might prove to be a great buy.
But it would be wrong to assume that the Galaxy Round will prevent Apple (NASDAQ: AAPL) from maintaining its success this fall. The iPhone 5S and iPhone 5C have already set a new sales record for smartphones. The Galaxy Round is unlikely to catch up.
Disclosure: At the time of this writing, Louis Bedigian had no position in the equities mentioned in this report.
Louis Bedigian is the Senior Tech Analyst and Features Writer of Benzinga. You can reach him at louis(at)benzingapro(dot)com. Follow him @LouisBedigianBZ
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