South Korean sources suggest this week that LG’s sent word of a halting of efforts for their future rollable phone. This conceptual effort was meant to be a real deal, at some point – a phone with a display that’d effective unfurl like a scroll. But now, amid the restructuring of the LG smartphone business in general, it would appear that any sort of “rollable” smartphone efforts will need to be done by a different company, one more prepared to drop cash on such a risky endeavor.
Per the folks at Yonhap News Agency, supplier contacts say they’ve been given word by LG to “put the rollable smartphone development project on hold.” That’s according to “industry sources”, as they say. They went on to note that parts makers may “request compensation in the future for their development efforts.”
This is a bummer. It’s not completely unexpected, given LG’s latest news of restructuring and the years and years of being a smartphone company that’s never quite ready to be the biggest dog in the pack. According to Yonhap, LG noted that their development of said rollable phone is “still in progress”, but declined to detail the process any further. This also isn’t the first time we’ve heard that this phone might not happen – at least not in the sense we’d expect, with a market release and everything.
The good news is, the rollable smartphone concept was so very real that it came to the point where it was a workable prototype. We’ve been seeing flexible display panels for years, rollable right on the way – and we’ve got rollable panels ready for televisions… ready for the market, too!
So it’s not as if LG’s axing of this project means we’ll never see another wild concept phone come to life. The technology is out there – we just need a market with enough desire to allow a company (with enough cash) to make the effort. Cross your fingers it’s made into a device by a company that’s ready to stick around and support the software for many years into the future, too!