Samsung shelves Galaxy Fold events in S'pore, HK, Shanghai

Samsung said on Monday it will delay the public rollout of its Galaxy Fold foldable without giving a new release date after the smartphone maker admitted to screen malfunctions brought to light last week by tech reviewers.
The Galaxy Fold handset has been blighted by technology journalists' reports of breaks, bulges and blinking screens after using their samples for as short a period as a day. PHOTO: BLOOMBERG
The Galaxy Fold handset has been blighted by technology journalists' reports of breaks, bulges and blinking screens after using their samples for as short a period as a day. PHOTO: BLOOMBERG

SEOUL • Smartphone maker Samsung Electronics has postponed media events for its Galaxy Fold phone planned for this week in Hong Kong and Shanghai, a company official said, days after reviewers of the foldable handset reported defective samples.

The Singapore event scheduled for tomorrow was also postponed with no new date given.

"In the light of the recent feedback on a limited number of Galaxy Fold media review units, Samsung is taking the time to ensure that the Galaxy Fold units are in optimum shape for your experience at the event," said a spokesman in an e-mail last Saturday.

Samsung announced in February that the Galaxy Fold would launch in Singapore in the second quarter of the year.

Instead of plaudits ahead of the phone's launch on Friday in the United States, the South Korean conglomerate has been blighted by technology journalists reporting breaks, bulges and blinking screens after using their samples for as short a period as a day.

Samsung said it received "a few" reports of damage to the displays of samples of the US$1,980 (S$2,690) handset, raising the spectre of the combustible Galaxy Note 7 three years ago that the firm ultimately pulled from shelves at massive cost.

The reviewers' reports of broken screens went viral online and prompted the creation of the hashtag #foldgate on Twitter.

Samsung had hailed the folding design as the future of smartphones in a field that has seen few surprises since Apple's iPhone in 2007.

Chinese rival Huawei Technologies has also announced a folding handset, the Mate X.

The Samsung official yesterday said the company was thoroughly investigating the damage reports and declined to comment on whether there would be any change to the US release date.

The firm plans to begin South Korean and European sales next month and Chinese sales from an undisclosed date.

REUTERS

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on April 23, 2019, with the headline 'Samsung shelves Galaxy Fold events in S'pore, HK, Shanghai'. Print Edition | Subscribe