While waiting for the marketing of its first folding smartphone, TCL unveils another concept.
Best known for its televisions, the TCL brand also markets smartphones. For the moment, it offers relatively affordable devices. But at the same time, TCL is also developing devices with foldable and roll-up screens.
In 2020, TCL, for example, unveiled two concepts: a folding smartphone with two hinges, as well as a screen with a roll-up screen. And this April 2021, TCL returns to the charge, presenting a new concept that combines these two technologies.
Unveiled at an event broadcast online, this new concept is called Fold n Roll, and is presented as a three-in-one device. Indeed, when the device is folded, it has the shape of a classic smartphone, with a 6.87-inch screen. When the Fold n ‘Roll is unfolded (via a mechanism similar to that of Huawei’s Mate X), it transforms into a “phablet” with an 8.85-inch square screen. But if the user needs a larger screen, part of it rolls out, which turns the device into a 10-inch tablet.
In essence, the idea is to offer the user three different formats, and to choose one of these formats depending on the activity in progress.
At the moment, these are just concepts
But unfortunately, these are only concepts which are not commercialized, but which only allow TCL to show the general public what will be possible thanks to the technologies being developed in its laboratories. Moreover, this umpteenth concept using flexible screens signals TCL’s interest in this type of technology.
Moreover, it should be noted that TCL is not the only company interested in roll-up screens. A few months ago, the Chinese brand Oppo also unveiled a concept of a roll-up screen smartphone. And earlier this year, LG also presented a device using this technology (however, the Korean company finally decided to end its mobile division).
TCL: finally, a product using an extendable screen this year?
TCL will not be limited to concepts. In fact, at its event this April, the brand announced that it still plans to launch its first device using foldable screens this year.
Nevertheless, it is very likely that this first folding device will be less complex than the Fold n ‘Roll concept. Indeed, the design of it does not necessarily allow to have a great durability (because of the screen which folds outwards). In addition, such a device would certainly be very expensive if it were to be marketed.
In any case, this year consumers will have more choices when it comes to foldable smartphones. While we are still waiting for the new models from Samsung, which could be unveiled in July, Xiaomi recently presented its first folding smartphone: the Mi Mix Fold . And according to some rumors, Google could also present its first folding-screen Pixel smartphone in the second half of the year.