Foldable smartphones aim to address conflicting desires for large screens and portability. Devices like the Samsung Galaxy Z Fold offer a phone that unfolds into a tablet, but the tablet screen is still relatively small. Achieving a regular tablet-sized display requires significant design changes, which current foldables struggle with. Manufacturers, including Samsung, are working on solutions, with rumors suggesting Samsung may unveil its answer this year to outpace rivals.

The current foldable phone design isn’t the final goal. Samsung’s 2013 concept video hinted at more than just one fold. Its display division has been developing screens for a phone that unfolds into a tablet, showing promising progress in 2022. This suggests such a device might be close.

A new rumor suggests Samsung could unveil the “Flex S” triple foldable phone this year, possibly alongside the Galaxy Z Fold 6 and Galaxy Z Flip 6. Samsung might be hurrying to release this groundbreaking device to beat rival Huawei, who is also rumored to launch a tri-fold phone in the second half of 2024. Samsung wouldn’t want Huawei to be the first, despite its limited market reach.

The “Flex S” triple folding phone prototype will revolutionize foldables. It provides a larger tablet screen and maintains a wider aspect ratio when collapsed, unlike current Galaxy Z Fold designs. It also introduces new usage modes, like a tent-like stand mode and a mini dual-screen laptop mode.

Samsung should have learned from its mistakes five years ago. The first Samsung Galaxy Fold faced reliability issues despite years of research and development. Introducing a new tri-fold design will once again challenge the durability of flexible screens, bringing more risks and costs. While Huawei’s limited global presence means Samsung doesn’t need to rush, companies often prioritize being first despite potential issues.