Samsung finally announced its first foldable smartphone, the Galaxy Fold, earlier this year. It has been a long time coming. The company has been teasing this device, in some capacity or another, since 2014. Now, in 2019, the Galaxy Fold launches in late April for a price of $1,980.
Initial hands-on impressions of the Galaxy Fold were actually very positive. While there was some trepidation from some, which is expected considering this is the first of its kind and it's an early adopter's dream come true. But, all-in-all, most folks seemed pleasantly surprised by the handset.
And then a day or two later and now we're talking about Galaxy Folds breaking out there in the wild.
Here's a quick recap of what happened earlier today, just in case you missed it: Reports from major publications started coming in, showcasing a broken Galaxy Fold when the handset is opened up. There were, and still are, a lot of them. But, at the same time, there were a few reviewers out there that weren't having any issues at all.
Some pointed out that there is a pre-installed screen protector-like type accessory already in place on the larger internal display. Samsung informed individuals that they shouldn't take it off, but it appears that it wasn't billed as a "If you remove it, you'll break the phone" situation.
Now, it appears that is exactly what's going on. It's basically been confirmed that removing that internal protective layer on the Galaxy Fold will break it, and not in a minor way, either. These are catastrophic hardware issues, with some reviewers noting a bulge under the display itself and along the hinge, as well as other general display failures in general.
Now, we deal with ridiculously expensive smartphones all the time these days, but the Galaxy Fold takes that trend and runs with it. Should someone expect their $1,980 smartphone to fail spectacularly just because they remove a screen protector? Can they put a screen protector over that pre-installed layer (I don't know why someone might want to do that, though)?
I've seen a growing consensus that Samsung has a big hill to climb ahead of it, because the company didn't make it apparent just how important that protective layer is -- and that was to reviewers. How can they expect to express how important it is to the general consumer? Is Samsung going to inform AT&T and T-Mobile employees to stress just how vital it is for these new device buyers to not remove it? What if the customer representative at one of those shops forgets?
Samsung has found itself in some choppy water, and it's unfortunate that it is now marring what was the Galaxy Fold's positive reception. But at least the battery isn't exploding?
The Galaxy Fold goes on sale in less than 10 days. It's not expected to fly off the shelves or anything, but if this particular situation isn't fixed in a major, obvious way the company is going to have an even bigger headache to deal with later this month, and well into the future.
What do you think of all this? How do you think Samsung can make sure all new owners know not to remove this protective layer? Let me know!