By: Aaron Shimanov
One major technological innovation that I see on the horizon is foldable screens. This innovation will allow people to wear screens on their wrist, similar to this Nubia smartwatch, which has a rounded and flexible display. It will also allow for smartphone manufacturers to blur the lines between tables and phones. I believe this is a positive thing first and foremost because of durability, since the most common damage on smartphones is cracked displays. Examples of upcoming foldable smartphones include the Samsung Galaxy Fold, which will be shipping soon after an initial delay. Another example is the Huawei Mate X. Both of these phones were delayed since their initially anticipated Q2 2019 release date. However, this rounding screen capability will also be useful for things like curved televisions, and has already existed in curved monitors, to increase user immersion, increased depth, less reflections, and more.
The reason I believe that for mobile that it is a bigger deal however, is because with mobile, people want lighter, and smaller. In the case of smartphones, people want a small screen for small tasks and simple things. However, when they watch video or send long e-mails, they want a large screen. To have both, and have it pocketable, would be the best of both worlds combined into one computing device. Such a technology will change the way we look at devices like iPhones and iPads, and draw consumer attention towards these morphing phones that are also small tablets. I believe this would be a positive innovation for society, with little drawbacks. The main one I could foresee, is people becoming distracted by the action of folding and unfolding their devices. Many reviewers raved about how satisfying it was to fold and unfold the Galaxy Fold when review units were sent out, before the device was pulled. This, the cost of the display, and the lack of premium-feeling glass over the display are the only cons that I could come up with.