One of the biggest setbacks in the mobile industry took place earlier this month as the GSMA announced that it is cancelling MWC 2020. For those who are unaware, Mobile World Congress is one of the biggest trade shows for the industry. This is the event where we get to see companies revealing what they have worked on in the past year. Since the show got cancelled, we will not be able to see any of those cool prototype phones and other gadgets.
However, we now have our first leak which is related to MWC. Apparently, TCL is working on a phone which is totally different in approach from foldable phones we have seen so far. This is because TCL’s prototype type which was reportedly set to be showcased at the MWC 2020 has an extendable display.TCL’s phone is designed in a way that you can slide-out the display instead of unfolding it.
Therefore, it can be clearly seen from the images that the device which looks like a slightly-larger smartphone gets converted into a tablet by just sliding it out. As seen from the “leaked” images which are available in higher resolution, we can see that the display has dual selfie cameras too.
As you can notice from the image attached above, it shows the normal state of this device as well as its expanded state. And you can clearly see that there is a plastic-like construction which makes the expansion work. At the back, there are as much as four camera sensors along with a flash module.
Now, we can say that this is one of the most practical use-cases of a foldable display that we have ever seen in a while. While you might feel that this display expands so it might not have a foldable phone, it definitely has to be a foldable one because the extra part of this panel might be folded at the back of this device and then you can slide it out.
While we don’t know how and if TCL can manage to pull this device off for the masses, it will be one of the most demanded foldable phones of all time. Because we see that the Galaxy Fold tries to give you a tablet experience but it fails to give you a normal smartphone experience. On the other hand, the Galaxy Flip gives you a normal phone experience but it does not have a bigger display.
If TCL manages to pull this design off, it can have a winner on the cards. One major concern with this design, however, is that if the display is folded inside the device when not expanded then it has to be bent quite sharply posing a risk of the crease as well as permanent damage in the long run.
We will also have a see how the device transitions from the smartphone mode to tablet mode and if the device has multiple expansion stops or it needs to be fully expanded for a proper tablet experience.