There have been countless conceptual mock-ups and several prototypes of flexible smartphones, but none of them have really been made available to the public. That’s still true, at least until Moxi Group’s flexible smartphone/watch comes out later this year.
The contorting smartphone by the Chinese startup hit the Internet Monday on Bloomberg Technology, but it isn’t exactly an iPhone-turned-bendy — it will be more like a flexible Kindle. Moxi Group’s Executive Vice President Chongsheng Yu told Bloomberg Technology the company will first be selling its smartphone with a black and white display using e-ink technology. According to CNN Money, the phones are expected to cost around $760, which is a big asking price for a black and white smartphone.
The phones will only be sold in China to start, but if there’s high demand and interest, Yu said they would consider selling the product overseas. He also said that a flexible color display will be available in 2018.
In order to make a functioning, flexible smartphone, Moxi Group used graphene, which is a super-thin conductive material made up of a single layer of carbon atoms.
While that works for creating a display, you can’t exactly make the battery and computer parts flexible. Similar to the ReFlex bendable smartphone prototype, those components are relegated to one side of the device that is kept rigid, which looks like this:
The ReFlex uses OLED technology for its display though, not graphene. The black and white phones could look something like the Wove Band from Polyera:
The Wove Band uses graphene and e-ink technology similar to a Kindle, which is what will make up Moxi Group’s smartphone. Based on the concept images though, Moxi Group’s smartphone will probably be wider and a bit sturdier along with more complex capabilities.
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