The annual Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas, which kicked off this week, is all about the networking, the panels, the guest appearances, but more than anything — the big reveal. Tech companies big and small, from Samsung down to myriad startups you’ve never heard of, use the conference to, among other things, gin up news coverage for their newest experiments, research projects, and all of their ideas for the Next Big Thing.
Speaking of Samsung, though, it’s reportedly been using the occasion of CES this week to show off one of its newest phones … pretty much completely in private.
According to Korean news outlet ETNews, Samsung has a private booth it’s set up to show off a new rollable phone with a slide-out screen to potential customers. We’ve reported previously on Samsung designs along these lines, and one of the things that stands out, in this case, is that by showing off the phone in private, this is very much the anti-Galaxy Fold strategy. This one has yet another strange form factor, with a familiar-looking tall and somewhat narrow phone that can be pulled out from the side to reveal what turns into a small tablet-sized screen — and with the negative attention that Samsung’s Galaxy Fold experiment generated, perhaps it’s no surprise Samsung is going in the opposite direction with the marketing here and keeping the circle on this tight for now.
For an idea of what this secret phone that Samsung has been showing off in Las Vegas this week might look like, the designers at Dutch tech news blog LetsGoDigital have produced this color rendering:
That design includes a plastic screen similar to that of the Galaxy Fold’s. Pressing a button appears to be the mechanism that pulls out the screen to its fully extended form, turning a 6-inch display into an 8-inch one. Samsung also isn’t the only one pursuing this design, with companies ranging from LG to Xiaomi and TCL among others that are experimenting with a pullout design of some sort.
It’s known that Samsung has been experimenting with both a vertical and horizontal version of the above design, among the South Korea tech giant’s many other phone experiments. We said it before and we’ll say it again — the future of smartphone design is apparently going to look a lot weirder and more bizarre than we’ve been accustomed to up to this point.