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Linked by Jason Snell

Samsung Galaxy Fold review disaster

Dieter Bohn of the Verge reports that the screen on his Samsung Galaxy Fold review unit broke after a day:

…while the crease and the nicks feel like compromises you could live with, a mysterious bulge that breaks the screen is something else entirely — especially one that appears just a day after pretty normal use. It’s a problem that is unacceptable on a phone that costs this much.

Every phone with movable parts is going to have more points of failure than a fully sealed, static phone. So it’s natural to say that you need to treat it with more care than usual. Before I saw this bulge, my impression was that this phone was much more durable than I expected. The hinge always felt solid and well-built. That impression of (relative) durability is obviously as broken as the flexing screen now.

Numerous Galaxy Note reviewers reported screen failures, some of them after peeling off what appeared to be a screen protector that turns out to be necessary for the functioning of the device.

What baffles me is that this was a planned product roll-out, seeding the device to journalists for the first wave of reviews. My experience is that review hardware is generally vetted before being distributed to ensure that nobody gets a lemon. Did Samsung check out these devices? Did nobody at Samsung do the same sort of testing that these reviewers did, that exposed these problems so quickly? I’m just flabbergasted that these things got in the hands of reviewers if they were in such a delicate state.

I expected the road to foldable phones to be a bit bumpy—that’s the nature of new tech. But not quite this bumpy.