Samsung Galaxy Fold faces growing questions over quality

Samsung Electronics apparently needs more time than previously expected to check out the hardware requirements of its first foldable smartphone Galaxy Fold.

This is raising the possibility that the launch of the next-generation mobile phone, anticipated for June, could be pushed back further.

The Korean tech giant was planning originally to release the Galaxy Fold in the United States in April and in Korea in May, but postponed the launch after tech reviewers claimed they found flaws in the main display of the foldable smartphone.

When announcing the postponement on April 23, Samsung said it was going to fully analyze the feedback and run further internal tests.

At the time, the company said a new release date will be announced “in the coming weeks,” but no official confirmation has been made since then.

Telecom officials here said Samsung has been carrying out network connection tests on the foldable devices.

“We have not been informed about the launch schedule yet,” a telecom company official said, asking not to be named.

Officials said it seems it is taking longer than expected for Samsung to inspect components such as displays and films.

Amid growing uncertainty, the U.S. electronics retailer Best Buy has canceled preorders for the troubled foldable device, citing the lack of a new release date.

Last week, the retailer sent a cancellation notice to customers who preordered the phone.

In its email, the retailer noted “with breakthrough designs and technology come many hurdles and the possibility to face a plethora of unforeseen hiccups. These hurdles have led Samsung to postpone the release of the Galaxy Fold, and Samsung has not provided a new release date,” according to The Verge.

Regarding the issue, a Samsung Electronics official maintained the firm’s initial position, saying, “Nothing has been decided yet. A new announcement regarding the launch date will be made in coming weeks.”

Industry officials noted Samsung may have more time to improve the quality of the Galaxy Fold as it is uncertain when rival Huawei will launch its foldable smartphone Mate X amid a prolonged trade war between the United States and China.

The Chinese tech giant was expected to release its foldable device in July, but is facing a serious setback to do so following the Donald Trump administration’s order that effectively barred U.S. firms from selling components and software to the Chinese tech giant.

Following the order, Google said it would comply with U.S. government restrictions, which could restrict Huawei devices’ access to the Android operating system.

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