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123 comments

What is the point of this? (4, Interesting)

h4rr4r (612664) | about 7 months ago | (#45060317)

So what is the use case if we still have a glass plate in front of the display?

If no glass plate this thing would be scratched to hell and back in a couple minutes.

Re:What is the point of this? (1)

mythosaz (572040) | about 7 months ago | (#45060365)

Perhaps they'll be smart enough to coat the front in some flexible way. ...or it's Ghost Armor on everything.

Re:What is the point of this? (1)

h4rr4r (612664) | about 7 months ago | (#45060461)

Name one flexible material that is transparent and as hard as glass?

Ghost Armor like all other protective covers just dim the display and obscure the clarity. On top of that they have to be replaced periodically or you may as well just have a scratched up device.

Re:What is the point of this? (2)

mythosaz (572040) | about 7 months ago | (#45060543)

True.

It's a trade off.

Right now, if you want flexible, you're likely going to have to deal with less clear screen than glass.
If you want to protect that flexible screen, you're likely going to have to deal with some sort of rubberized coating as well. ...but your objection to Ghost Armor (and other similar products) is purely opinion. My HTC One is sufficiently pretty behind a matte front. I'm not doing graphics illustration or crime scene forensics on my display, so the minimally-diminished display doesn't hurt me.

It's a trade off.

Re:What is the point of this? (1)

h4rr4r (612664) | about 7 months ago | (#45060561)

Then why not just get a cheaper device with a cheaper display?

If I bought an HTC one it would go naked like every smartphone I have ever had. The glass on them is so hard only sand or diamonds will scratch them.

Re:What is the point of this? (3, Interesting)

mythosaz (572040) | about 7 months ago | (#45060727)

It's about choice.

Sure. Just give me a phone with the same processing power, the ability to take a call in speakerphone mode in a loud car, a screen large enough for my should-wear-bifocals eyes, and a non-carrier-based, unlocked-out-of-the-box stock from-Google ROM. It's a short list, and I picked the HTC.

I prefer being able to keep my phone in a pocket with my keys and not worry about scratching the screen. You seem to be having a different experience, but I'm willing to sacrifice a TINY bit of screen clarity for a good deal of protection for my phone.

People who want a flexible screen will enjoy not having a phone that shatters as often when dropped and will be willing to sacrifice some clarity over hard-glass screens for it.

Re:What is the point of this? (1)

h4rr4r (612664) | about 7 months ago | (#45060767)

What are your keys made of? Diamond?

Re:What is the point of this? (1)

mythosaz (572040) | about 7 months ago | (#45060837)

What are your phones made of, unobtanium?

It takes a lot less than diamonds to scratch Gorilla Glass.
My phone isn't made entirely of Gorilla Glass.

I dislike bulky cases, but like to protect my phone, so I make a small compromise in a wrap.

Re:What is the point of this? (1)

h4rr4r (612664) | about 7 months ago | (#45061037)

Aluminosilicate glass. Try scratching a modern smartphone display, keys are not going to do it.

Re:What is the point of this? (2)

CCarrot (1562079) | about 7 months ago | (#45063617)

Aluminosilicate glass. Try scratching a modern smartphone display, keys are not going to do it.

Sure! Hey, can I borrow your phone for a sec? :)

Re:What is the point of this? (1)

Sarten-X (1102295) | about 7 months ago | (#45061169)

Mine are steel with a light coating of silica sand, because I carry them in my pocket, which always seems to have a bit of sand in it, ready to scratch the softer steel and get caught in the impression.

Re:What is the point of this? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#45061989)

People who want a flexible screen will enjoy not having a phone that shatters as often when dropped and will be willing to sacrifice some clarity over hard-glass screens for it.

This. Any phone with a glass screen will shatter if dropped even a short distance.

Re:What is the point of this? (1)

lgw (121541) | about 7 months ago | (#45062247)

The glass on them is so hard only sand or diamonds will scratch them.

A friend of mine had a cat that would scratch a sliding glass door to signal it wanted in or out. The glass was pretty thoroughly scratched. Were the cat's claws made of diamond? No, just a bit just sand on its paws. Abrasives that can scratch hard glass are common, and in arid environments are everywhere.

I don't worry about scratching - my glass phone broke the first time I dropped it. The screen protection film has kept it usable - cracks and all - for years since. But then, I don't really use it as a pocket computer.

Re:What is the point of this? (3, Funny)

RenderSeven (938535) | about 7 months ago | (#45060655)

Name one flexible material that is transparent and as hard as glass?

Transparent aluminum? Its even possible that I invented it.

Re:What is the point of this? (1)

h4rr4r (612664) | about 7 months ago | (#45060725)

Actually that exists. It is normally called sapphire and was going to be used on the ubuntu phone. It is not however flexible.

Re:What is the point of this? (1)

NatasRevol (731260) | about 7 months ago | (#45061213)

Actually it's called alumina. Sapphire is alumina with some impurities for color. Just like rubies.

Re:What is the point of this? (1)

RenderSeven (938535) | about 7 months ago | (#45061547)

It is not however flexible.

I thought of that. When I invent it in the future I shall remember to invent it with flexiblenessivity.

Re:What is the point of this? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#45060853)

Transparent Aluminium is also known as Saphire and it is commonly used for wrist watches and LCD screens.

Re:What is the point of this? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#45064039)

It is of interest to make the distinction between sapphire and sapphire glass.
Sapphire glass is used when for the pure colorless aluminum oxide while sapphire implies impurities that lead to a blue or green color.
If the impurities causes a red color you call it a ruby and if it is pink-orange it's suddenly a padparadscha.

Re:What is the point of this? (4, Interesting)

Baloroth (2370816) | about 7 months ago | (#45060901)

Name one flexible material that is transparent and as hard as glass?

Well, glass for one. Seriously, Corning has a flexible glass called Willow Glass, probably because they saw flexible and curved OLED displays coming (it's probably not as hard as Gorilla Glass, but then, what do you expect from flexible glass).

Re:What is the point of this? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#45062323)

Transparent Aluminum

Re: What is the point of this? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#45062369)

It's called aluminium. You Yankees should learn the proper and official name.

Re: What is the point of this? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#45062541)

Humphry Davy disagreed.

Re: What is the point of this? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#45063503)

Wrong. He changed mind pretty quickly. While it's true that he initially called it aluminum (shudder), soon there after he called it aluminium too. In line with potassium, calcium, etc.

In addition : the IUPAC decided that aluminium is the official and international standard name for the element. Even in the US the name aluminium was used officially throughout the 19th century and unfortunately later bastardised.

Re: What is the point of this? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#45063765)

No he didn't because he was long dead by the time "aluminium" was adopted by IUPAC, the same organization that recognizes "aluminum" as a valid spelling.

Aluminium is also not in line with the naming of 37 currently known elements, including some elements which were known at the time aluminum was discovered.

Re: What is the point of this? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#45063963)

Wrong again. As I wrote. He changed his mind pretty quickly. He was well alive when he himself called it Aluminium. Has nothing to do with IUPAC. The alternative spelling was allowed to not offend you sensible Yankees. Doesn't change the fact that the international standard spelling is aluminium. End of.

Re: What is the point of this? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#45062631)

I know another corrector like you.. A Brit expat with a need to inject Proper Imperialist Superiority. My common response? Fuck Off.

Re: What is the point of this? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#45063115)

The exact response he would expect from someone so ...common. You're only succeeding in making him feel more superior. Good job, mate!

Re: What is the point of this? (1)

bdwebb (985489) | about 7 months ago | (#45063493)

You realize that calling people common is akin to calling them peasants. Unless you are part of the English aristocracy, that also includes you. Good job with your caste system, mate! Make sure to get out of the way before you're horsewhipped.

Re: What is the point of this? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#45063787)

Common? That's rich coming from someone whose country is nothing but a lapdog for the USA.

Re: What is the point of this? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#45064069)

We try to be friendly to our colonies.
Just like a good parent to his adolescent child.

You confuse British manners and politeness with being submissive.

Re:What is the point of this? (1)

mc6809e (214243) | about 7 months ago | (#45060389)

So what is the use case if we still have a glass plate in front of the display?

If no glass plate this thing would be scratched to hell and back in a couple minutes.

The point is that OLEDs are beautiful. Images are vivid. Black looks black instead of dark gray.

There's a huge difference between selectively filtering one light source and selectively activating arbitrary light sources.

Re:What is the point of this? (1)

h4rr4r (612664) | about 7 months ago | (#45060415)

AMOLED has been around a long time.
You are leaving out their issues. Splotchy colors, grey looks terrible, white often has the same issues, black is not the same level across the display.

Sure, if they fix those problems it would be great, but making it flexible does not do that.

Re:What is the point of this? (1)

SJHillman (1966756) | about 7 months ago | (#45060807)

So AMOLED is better for porn featuring black actors and worse for porn featuring most other races. It's about time we can choose displays based on sexual preference.

Re:What is the point of this? (1)

h4rr4r (612664) | about 7 months ago | (#45061099)

At the colors humans are the display is fine. No humans are that black or that white. Perhaps if you are interested in Aliens the grey issues could be a problem.

Re: What is the point of this? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#45062299)

[citation needed]
My family has had a dozen AMOLED devices (mostly Samsung) over the past few years and the screens have been perfect. Never heard of any of these complaints with AMOLED before.

Re: What is the point of this? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#45063821)

The reason I won't buy another piece of electronics with an OLED screen is because of the fast and uneven colour degradation, not to mention the horrible visibility in daylight.

Re:What is the point of this? (1)

wjh31 (1372867) | about 7 months ago | (#45060505)

I think the OP was taking issue with the flexibility, not the OLED. If the screen is to be flexible, this only becomes useful if everything else it's attached to is also flexible, in this case the glass protective screen, but actually also the electronic circuits it is to be attached to. If flexible screens can become mass produced so they are cheap enough to ship to consumers, then we may start to see some of the stuff that has been shown off as concept for years, e.g a fold up (http://static.ibnlive.in.com/pix/slideshow/01-2013/samsungs-shows-off/10-samsung-fexible-screen-youm.jpg) or roll up (http://static.ibnlive.in.com/pix/slideshow/01-2013/samsungs-shows-off/13-samsung-fexible-screen-youm.jpg) screen

Personally i see the fold up being realistic as it is essentially based on the clam shell that has been popular in the past, whereas the roll up screen would require the electronics be fit into a different, potentially smaller package as well has having the issue of supporting the screen while extended

Re:What is the point of this? (1)

narcc (412956) | about 7 months ago | (#45061069)

I think the OP was taking issue with the flexibility, not the OLED. If the screen is to be flexible, this only becomes useful if everything else it's attached to is also flexible

The selling point, according to the two-sentence summary, is that making the display flexible makes it "unbreakable". TFA doesn't offer any more detail, but the presumption is that the display won't shatter.

Re:What is the point of this? (1)

mspohr (589790) | about 7 months ago | (#45061937)

OLEDs wash out in bright light (like outdoors).
They also "burn in" images just like old CRTs.

Re:What is the point of this? (1)

Nadaka (224565) | about 7 months ago | (#45062059)

Almost everything washes out in bright light.

Re:What is the point of this? (1)

mspohr (589790) | about 7 months ago | (#45062255)

The new IPS TFT screens are much better than OLEDs.
My new phone with IPS is very readable even in direct sunlight whereas my old OLED screen is unreadable in direct sunlight. (Side by side comparison).

Re:What is the point of this? (1)

nospam007 (722110) | about 7 months ago | (#45060437)

"If no glass plate this thing would be scratched to hell and back in a couple minutes."

It's gorilla plastic.

Re:What is the point of this? (1)

Hentes (2461350) | about 7 months ago | (#45060559)

Foldable tablets. The screens fold together, protecting each other from scratches, and it will fit in your pocket.

Re:What is the point of this? (1)

h4rr4r (612664) | about 7 months ago | (#45060599)

It will also have a nice distracting seam in the middle. Besides you can bend this not fold it.

Simply touching and using a plastic display like that will scratch the hell out of it.

Re:What is the point of this? (1)

Hentes (2461350) | about 7 months ago | (#45060987)

Unless you touch it with your nails (and I don't see why would you do that with a capacitive screen), a plastic screen can withstand everyday use. There were phones before the iphone, you know.

Re:What is the point of this? (2)

h4rr4r (612664) | about 7 months ago | (#45061125)

Your fingers are not as clean as you think. I had phones before the current glass screen craze and they all scratched. You can get cheap android phones with plastic displays, they get scratched quite quickly.

Re:What is the point of this? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#45061449)

It's interesting how differently people experience this. I have been using mobile phones exclusively since about 1997. After 3-4 years of service, phones have had the faux-metal finish wear off of corners to reveal the plastic underneath, have had physical keypads start to become unreliable to due dust infiltration, or have had membrane keypads delaminate and require a little contact cement to repair.

I think I had only one screen ever get visibly scratched, and that was a single gouge that did not affect readability, cause by dropping the phone in a parking lot with loose gravel on top of the pavement. I never had one screen show any visible wear from finger contact. My latest smartphone has been in service for one year and, apart from some lint around the sdcard cover, looks exactly as it did when new.

I have one golden rule: the phone goes in a different pocket from anything else, whether it is jeans, cargo shorts, dress slacks, a jacket or coat, or even a day pack for a hike in the Sierra. By contrast, my wife destroys phones with her purse (which might as well be one of those machines Levi's uses to distress new denim).

Re:What is the point of this? (1)

MightyYar (622222) | about 7 months ago | (#45061017)

Use your imagination - I don't know what the minimum radius is, but if they leave room in the hinge then the screen could retract away from the edges of the frame such that it forms a radius in the hinge. Such a mechanism need not be complicated - simply attach the screen at the back of the hinge. It is a trivial design challenge, at least in principle. Let this message serve as "prior art" if some knucklehead tries to patent it :)

Re:What is the point of this? (1)

Hognoxious (631665) | about 7 months ago | (#45063549)

Sort of like a smoothed out keyhole shape, or those loops you sometimes see for trains/trams to turn round?

Re:What is the point of this? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#45060755)

So what is the use case if we still have a glass plate in front of the display?

If no glass plate this thing would be scratched to hell and back in a couple minutes.

Replace the glass instead of the entire screen when you break it? Assuming that the glass doesn't damage the display, it would be cheaper to simply install a new pane of glass over the still functioning display.

Re:What is the point of this? (1)

h4rr4r (612664) | about 7 months ago | (#45060785)

You can do that with a rigid LCD/AMOLED too. Normally for thickness reasons those are glued to the glass though. I can't imagine they would not do that as well with this.

The point is iWatch etc. (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#45060775)

It's for making iWatches. Not some huge mystery there. You thought the idea was that the display would be END USER flexible?! No, it's flexible as pertains to production. With a flat display you can only make a watch "that" big, you need something that curves naturally around your wrist.

Re:What is the point of this? (1)

ultranova (717540) | about 7 months ago | (#45060955)

If no glass plate this thing would be scratched to hell and back in a couple minutes.

Flexible materials in general tend to not scratch easily; what would scratch a harder material just pushes it out of the way.

Re:What is the point of this? (1)

Nemyst (1383049) | about 7 months ago | (#45061025)

I don't think initial applications will involve actually flexible displays, but it could easily be used to make curved TVs, phone screens or watch displays. The latter would be especially interesting as it'd allow the watch's screen to be much larger without becoming inconvenient, all while leveraging OLED's low power characteristics when few pixels are lit up.

The next step would then be to develop a flexible surface with a texture similar to glass.

Re:What is the point of this? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#45061381)

We have flexible glass as well.

Re:What is the point of this? (1)

Solandri (704621) | about 7 months ago | (#45063319)

Well if you're going to require a glass plate in front, then no there's not much value here. Maybe being able to fix a broken display by just replacing the glass cover instead of the entire display.

But long-term, I think this is the future. No glass, just a plastic display. You can cover it with a cheap screen protector to ward off scratches. When the protector gets too scratched up, just peel it off and put on a new one. If you drop it, it'll flex instead of shatter [youtube.com] . Many laptop screens are plastic instead of glass for this reason, and the decision to make phone displays glass was in many ways a step backwards. Form ("premium" feel) taking priority over function (impact resistance).

Re:What is the point of this? (1)

sjames (1099) | about 7 months ago | (#45063655)

TV/Monitor? Any other non-touchscreen application? Cellphones where replacing the glass doesn't mean replacing the entire display too?

Unbreakable combs ain't (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#45060337)

Just sayin'

TFA (4, Informative)

mythosaz (572040) | about 7 months ago | (#45060353)

TFA is so sparse on details that it's painful.

After rounding, there's roughly zero information about this in the linked "article."

Re:TFA (1)

OzPeter (195038) | about 7 months ago | (#45060965)

After rounding, there's roughly zero information about this in the linked "article."

Maybe you should apply a different rounding algorithm then?

Re:TFA (1)

Entropy98 (1340659) | about 7 months ago | (#45062731)

After rounding, there's roughly zero information about this in the linked "article."

Maybe you should apply a different rounding algorithm then?

According to my rounding algorithm there is 1 information!

Wait... a phone which lasts? (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#45060403)

I don't believe "unbreakable" claims. If the screen doesn't contain glass so won't shatter, they'll just design some other component to easily fail. Phones which last mean fewer future phone sales. Why would a company want to do that to themselves?

Re:Wait... a phone which lasts? (1)

mythosaz (572040) | about 7 months ago | (#45060467)

While a quick Google search fails me, I'm not sure what the consumer product definition of "unbreakable" is, but I'm pretty sure it means you can absolutely break it under all sorts of conditions -- just not a narrowly defined set for a specific period of time.

Re:Wait... a phone which lasts? (1)

SJHillman (1966756) | about 7 months ago | (#45060847)

It usually means under normal, expected use. For a phone, I would include dropping it from heights up to five or six feet, sitting on it, etc. I would not expect it to hold up to a sledgehammer or being run over by a car. It might hold up to that kind of intentional/abnormal abuse, but I wouldn't have the expectation that it would.

Re:Wait... a phone which lasts? (2)

h4rr4r (612664) | about 7 months ago | (#45060483)

Since they are outdated in 6-12 months there is no need to make the devices self destruct.

Even folks who keep smartphones an unusual amount of time do not generally exceed 24-36 months.

I have never shattered a screen, the worst I have done are very small scratches that cannot be seen with the display on. Try not dropping them so often.

Re:Wait... a phone which lasts? (1)

scarboni888 (1122993) | about 7 months ago | (#45061065)

Yes but how can we work towards throwing things away EVEN FASTER??

2 days ought to be enough for anyone to own any product, is what I'm thinking.

Re:Wait... a phone which lasts? (1)

narcc (412956) | about 7 months ago | (#45061147)

I've never shattered a screen either, but that doesn't mean that it's an uncommon problem.

Re:Wait... a phone which lasts? (1)

Bob the Super Hamste (1152367) | about 7 months ago | (#45061297)

Well I have a few times but then those were on older phones and I stopped having the problem when I got a flip phone. That and both times were while working on vehicles where the phone inadvertently ended up being what I was leaning on.

Re:Wait... a phone which lasts? (2)

MozeeToby (1163751) | about 7 months ago | (#45061403)

Even folks who keep smartphones an unusual amount of time do not generally exceed 24-36 months.

I think you have a very strange idea of what the "usual" replacement cycle is. At least in the US, nearly everyone keeps their phone for 2 years, since that is the length of the standard contract to get the "subsidized" rate. Personally, I know no one that ditches their phone (and takes a multi-hundred dollar hit) every 6-12 months. That might be different in other circles of course, but my sample is young-ish engineers who have both the interest and cash to do it if they really wanted to.

For manufacturers (1)

Guspaz (556486) | about 7 months ago | (#45060563)

Even if you put glass in front of it, this lets manufacturers of devices use the display in varying configurations with more or less curvature without needing a custom display solution. One company might use it flat, another highly curved, and they don't need expensive custom displays.

Unbreakable huh? (1)

jandrese (485) | about 7 months ago | (#45060595)

Are you willing to put money on that LG? Every time a manufacturer claims that their screen is "unbreakable", they get embarrassed by the first guy who really puts effort into it.

Challenge accepted. (2)

Overzeetop (214511) | about 7 months ago | (#45060633)

I believe the response you're looking for is "challenge accepted."

Re:Challenge accepted. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#45061151)

HP used to make a IpaQ, with 802.11, an IR port, a sim-card slot for obsolete gsm netwok, and the functionality of Bloodaxe`s son.
These days, a clone may be cheaper. the cops copied everything, maybe they "cloned" it.
However not ideal, it used microsoft OS, but it worked OK, skype, vlc, all worked fine. worked a lot creating a webpage, transferred the file via skype from the IpaQ no problem, had backups of everything on the SD-card. It may have been a bit over-the-top in pricing (at around 500 bob), but a crappy car full of PDA`s (or SD-cards) is worth a lot more than the sticker price; it is what you make of it.

Great feature of the IpaQ was the ability to switch on/off each transceiver independantly. Efficient use of battery by turning off the wifi while only using bluetooth or the phone. Or switching off the phone while using wifi. The thing worked great until a sim-card from *BEZEQINT*, a corrupt middle-eastern network, was inserted into it. after the gsm used the simcasrd, it corrupted the MS connectivity switching, and it was not possible to turn off the gsm unless you tried to switch it off, and then immediately powered-off. When rebooted, it would only have wifi on.

I hope someone sues the pants off those buggers at bezeqint for interfering in peoples business.

Re:Unbreakable huh? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#45060805)

Yeah, I had this comb once, UNBREAKABLE printed right across the thing, and it still just snapped like a twig when I tried to fold it in half. I wanted to sue them for false advertising, but I couldn't find a good enough lawyer to take it.

zoloft's a hell of a drug (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#45062333)

but I couldn't find a good enough lawyer to take it.

R.I.P. Lionel Hutz

Re:Unbreakable huh? (1)

umafuckit (2980809) | about 7 months ago | (#45061215)

Of course it's not genuinely unbreakable--everything blends, after all. "Unbreakable" really means "unbreakable in 99% of normal usage scanrios" of similar. It means you can drop it of a table onto a hard floor and the screen won't shatter. It doesn't mean you can chuck it down a cliff and expect it to survive.

Steve Jobs looked at this option and rejected it (1)

humphrm (18130) | about 7 months ago | (#45060783)

Steve Jobs thought about using plastic, in fact one of the prototype iPhones had a plastic screen. He rejected it because of the cheap feel of the plastic, and went with the Gorilla Glass that he used in original iPhones. So I guess it's down to, do you want an indestructible phone screen, or do you want one that feels good?

And, btw, not an Apple fan boy here, I just happened to read Jobs bio by Walter Isaacson, he covered Jobs' choice in fair detail in the book.

Re:Steve Jobs looked at this option and rejected i (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#45060927)

Why did Jobs assume Apple users would be fondling their screens?

Re:Steve Jobs looked at this option and rejected i (1)

bill_mcgonigle (4333) | about 7 months ago | (#45061003)

So I guess it's down to, do you want an indestructible phone screen, or do you want one that feels good?

And if you're selling the replacement parts, 'breakable' isn't a bad option.

That aside, there are some 'self-healing' plastic coatings that I'd be interested in seeing on a cell phone. I pretty much don't care how it feels - I just want it to work well and be low-maintenance. Actually I'm pretty sure all my monochrome cell phones had screens with plastic coatings, and I never balked at how cheap they felt, I just used them to make phone calls.

I'd love to see $30 smart phones on the horizon - plastic-sandwiched OLED could help there. I realize Apple won't be in that business, but I can think of a few billion people in the world who could use one.

Re:Steve Jobs looked at this option and rejected i (1)

CanHasDIY (1672858) | about 7 months ago | (#45061661)

That aside, there are some 'self-healing' plastic coatings that I'd be interested in seeing on a cell phone. I pretty much don't care how it feels - I just want it to work well and be low-maintenance.

Nissan makes a self-healing clear coat [nissan-global.com] for their cars, I wonder how difficult it would be to use the substance on a flexible, plastic screen.

I'd love to see $30 smart phones on the horizon - plastic-sandwiched OLED could help there.

Eff that, wake me when someone starts marketing these [wikia.com]

Re:Steve Jobs looked at this option and rejected i (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#45061117)

Well, there ya go! This proves flexible displays are bad! Jobbo said it!

Re:Steve Jobs looked at this option and rejected i (1)

fullmetal55 (698310) | about 7 months ago | (#45061435)

you realize this is not talking about the screen, but the display UNDER the glass right? while I doubt we'll see flexible devices for a long time, I could see curved displays becoming more and more popular. people talking about curved display iphones and android will finally become feasible, of course the glass on top will still be glass, for the reasons you've suggested. using plastic as the display has it's own issues, but your concern about it having a cheap feel, well that's completely ignorant of the article and the technology. the outer glass is NOT the display. look at your computer LCD, chances are it has a plastic film over the glass display. this technology replaces the glass with plastic.

Again. the Gorilla Glass will still be laminated on top of the display, this allows for cheaper manufacture, and even curved displays. imagine a big screen concave tv, just like the projector screens in movie theatres. allowing for better display angles. That's where this will become very good technology. or convex displays, or even wrap-around displays, like it seems many rumour mills keep talking about the next great phone having. Glass won't go away for touch surfaces for a long time.

Re:Steve Jobs looked at this option and rejected i (1)

cusco (717999) | about 7 months ago | (#45062497)

The 'curved display' that initially comes to my mind is VR headsets.

Make a full page display already (1)

Chuckles08 (1277062) | about 7 months ago | (#45060867)

When will someone take this technology and make us a full page (8 1/5 x 11 inch) tablet? This seems like an obvious thing to do with a display tech that is lighter, flexible, and strong. I want something to read pdf files without having to find a magnifying glass.

Another Why? (1)

TheSkepticalOptimist (898384) | about 7 months ago | (#45061499)

Curved or flexible phones will be a fad that ends quickly.

Consider the uselessness of a touch devices with a concave or floppy limp screen?

While a curved phone works great for making a call by holding it up to your face, MOST people don't use phones in this way anymore. The smartphone is no longer a "phone" platform, its a computing device with a telephony feature.

Focusing too much on making the "call" feature of a smartphone, when it already works great anyways with a flat surface, will only make the other 99% of the features more annoying to use.

I do think there is a market for curved screens in other markets, but for phones its a pointlessly vain design choice.

Re:Another Why? (2)

CanHasDIY (1672858) | about 7 months ago | (#45061695)

Curved or flexible phones will be a fad that ends quickly.

Consider the uselessness of a touch devices with a concave or floppy limp screen?

Agreed - the idea of a phone that's not flat comes off as kind of silly.

Now, a convex screen that somewhat follows the contour of, say, a forearm? Now that is an idea that might gain some useful traction - a smartwatch that doesn't look like someone glued a wrist strap to a handful of LEGO bricks might just have a market.

Re:Another Why? (1)

cusco (717999) | about 7 months ago | (#45062557)

To be truthful, I'd be happier if they concentrated on the 'phone' feature, as I find the other 99% of the thing's features mostly annoying. It's a bloody phone, if I wanted to answer email or browse the web I'd user my laptop. I'd like to have my old 'brick' phone with the amazing reception and three day's battery charge back, but my work gives me a smart phone. All the other features do is suck down the battery life and (if I forget to turn them off) spy on my location, as well as opening possible attack vectors to my employer's systems.

Unbreakable huh? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#45062593)

Sir, God himself could not break this smartphone!

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