As the releasing date for Galaxy S5 is closing, more and more rumors are circulating around. Just like any other hi-tech products, some rumors are proven to be correct eventually, because technology is predictable.
For such rumors, you my check our live post on latest Galaxy S5 rumors.
One of the most important aspects of today’s smartphone is the display. A vivid screen is essential for the success of flagship smartphones.
Samsung does have an edge over other smartphone manufacturers on the smartphone screen, due to its dominance in OLED technology. Although there are some critics on OLED display on its over-saturated colors (i.e., unnatural), most consumers still enjoy the vivid color it provides. Samsung has never been shy on putting OLED panels on almost all flagship smartphones.
So, there is almost no question that Galaxy S5 will use OLED panel. The size will be around 5-5.25″. The resolution will surely be at full HD or even QHD (2560*1440)
The question that bugs many geeks is whether Samsung will use curved display for Galaxy S5.
Is flexible display for smartphone new?
Flexible display is not new. But using it on smartphones is just starting.
Samsung claimed the title of the first smartphone with a curved screen (flexible display) in early October. However, Galaxy Round is available in very limited regions. And it is not well-polished.
For Samsung, claiming the title is more important than fine tuning the product. LG G Flex probably is better tuned with the curved screen.
Now Samsung has time to catch-up in using flexible display on smartphones. Samsung is good at following, not at leading. Galaxy Round is an example; Galaxy Gear is another example.
Although Samsung has the technology, and may have the yielding capacity in the factory as well, but very unlikely Samsung will use flexible display in Galaxy S5 for following 3 reasons.
1. Samsung still does’t know how to re-invent smartphone with a curved screen
Changing from flat screen to a curved screen is not an incremental iteration. To benefit from the flexible display, re-invention of smartphone is needed. Otherwise, most users will not see the need for such a crived screen.
Galaxy Round is just one experiment for Samsung to test curved screens. It is a Galaxy Note 3 without S Pen. It is an enlarged Galaxy S4 with curved display. Essentially, Samsung has no idea how the flexible display should be used.
LG G Flex uses the curved screen to address the durability issues (with the help of the flexible back cover). But it apparently distorts the content noticeably.
So, Samsung will continue to experiment flexible display on more sizes. But they will use it on mainstream products only when someone else comes out with a revolutionary idea.
2. There is not enough competitive pressure on taking the risk
Samsung is now unarguably the king of Android phone. They are comfortably enjoying the success of Galaxy S series.
There are many critics on Samsung’s lack of innovation. Galaxy S4 probably disappointed quite a lot analysts. But the strategy of packing bells and whistles, and utilizing the almost-unlimited marketing budget still make Galaxy S4 the most successful smartphone in 2013. No other Android phones can challenge it: HTC One, Moto X, Sony Xperial X, LG G2.
Galaxy S5’s biggest competitor is Apple iPhone 5s, or maybe the rumored iPhone 6, not any Android phones. Apple will definitely not use curved screen in 2014. So, why does Samsung change to flexible display?
3. The cost, the cost and the cost
Samsung is good at cost-control probably because they started as a provider of budget alternatives. For example, they always use plastics for smartphones and tablets. Yielding capacity is often used as an excuse, because everyone knows Apple never has issues with yielding capacity from glass to aluminium.
Now Samsung can even sell plastics for premium price thanks to its marketing strength. The company culture probably will not change so fast.
Curved screen definitely costs more. So, if you plan to have a same price tag of Galaxy S4 (because most consumers know how much are expected for a flagship smartphone) , you surely will not want to increase the cost unless the competition is so fierce. The saved cost will be added to marketing which eventually can convert direct sales.
So, very unlikely, we will see a Galaxy S5 with a curved screen.
Flexible display surely has a future for smartphones, But the problem is that we do not know how to benefit from it.