LG has begun mass producing flexible OLED displays destined for smartphones. The screen measures 6" diagonally, which is probably large enough for phablet classification. Despite its size, the display is supposedly thinner and lighter than existing designs. LG says the panel measures just 0.44 mm thick and weighs only 7.2 g—that's 0.02" and 0.25 oz for the metric-impaired.
Although the display's plastic construction is flexible, don't expect a bendable handset. The initial implementation will employ a fixed, concave curve with a radius of 700 mm, or about 28". That curve seems to fit the profile of prototype sketches that popped up at the Wall Street Journal last week. The WSJ says the curved panel will debut in a G Flex device in November, but LG's press release suggests the first product may not arrive until next year.
Curved displays have some novelty value, but there are practical considerations. According to LG, the technology that makes the screen bendable also makes it unbreakable. A slightly concave device should fit more comfortably into one's back pocket, as well, though perhaps not with a 6" screen.
Unfortunately, there's no word on the panel's display resolution or other attributes. We don't know anything about the device that will host the curved screen, either, but we do know that it will have some competition. Samsung has pledged to introduce a smartphone with a curved screen this month.
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