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back to article LG starts producing flexible, curvy displays you can STROKE

LG's display unit has confirmed it is beginning mass-production of a flexible, "unbreakable" screen for its new smartphones. The screen is capable of curving rather more than one might want on a handset but, more importantly, it's made of plastic. LG describes the new screens as "bendable and unbreakable", which is a little …

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Bronze badge

Cool

Extrapolating from this announcement: One day we may see small portable devices with unfolding plastic screen or many little screens superimposed and opening up like a fan, with no bezels. That would be a nice step forward. And then we will maybe find a way to produce amorphous devices capable of flowing into almost any shape. Then mind-machine interface. After that, Bob's your Uncle. Exciting but strange times beckon!

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TJ1

Concave screen...

... may well help avoid reflections from strong light sources because if the curvature is 'just right' it'll focus on the face of the viewer (as well as what's to either side) in most cases.

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Silver badge

Scratch resistance?

Will they have to include a pack of screen protectors with each touch screen device?

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Re: Scratch resistance?

This is why I think this whole thing is a bad idea. There is no plastic yet that does not get attract scratches.

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Silver badge

Re: Scratch resistance?

"This is why I think this whole thing is a bad idea. There is no plastic yet that does not get attract scratches."

Some more than others. CR39 used for sunglasses is fairly scratch resistant, and that's real commodity grade stuff these days. I'd wager that there are plastics that don't scratch too badly. In fact my old Nokia 5800 survived two years of use by me, and then two years of use by my son with no significant scratching. Of course, being a resistive screen the UX was horrible, but in terms of durability there were no major concerns.

As anybody who's had to fork out to replace a cracked screen on a smartphone knows, there's a price for the brittleness of glass touchscreens.

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Silver badge

I might like this

Seems a great idea. A gently curved phone could better fit in many pockets than big rectangular flat slabs, being plastic it won't shatter as easily when dropped, and being curved (concave side being the touch side, I'm assuming) it won't be subject to as much scratching from being slid along tables. So long as the curve isn't too great I can't see that there's too much impact on viewing the screen.

The main downsides are that this will undoubtedly be another phone with a non-user changeable battery, (but I seem to be in a minority of one on that subject) and a question mark over how well the screen resists scratching from touch use. For the fans of solid build I'd guess that this won't have a solid alloy chassis, so it's going to creak a bit, but personally I can live with that.

Whether the market will accept novelty from a company like LG rather than the likes of Apple we'll have to wait and see.

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Bronze badge

Re: I might like this

This might interest you...

http://www.engadget.com/2013/10/07/lg-chem-curved-stepped-cable-batteries-coming/

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Anonymous Coward

I disagree with anything that screws up my Angry Birds technique.

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Anonymous Coward

I wonder how they get the digitiser to cope with the changing shape? Surely if you 'bend' the screen the calibration must shift.

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Coffee/keyboard

Unbreakable

That sounds like a challenge!

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Unbreakable

Only if we're also allowed to test your indestructabilty, Captain.

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Silver badge

Not bendy enough

I may be more interested when I can fold up a smartphone sized screen into the size of a small flip-phone.

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JERRY JERRY JERRY

when do we get spherical phones?

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Gold badge
Thumb Up

So a phone you could put in your *back* pocket and not break

When the John Smith backside inevitably introduces it to a hard seat.

Truly, we live in an age of miracles

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Bronze badge

Perfect for my brother

He's out mowing lawns and works for a guy fixing vehicles. Because of this he's got a knack for destroying even the most durable phones. Sadly, his wife got wise to this. When he destroys a phone, he gets her 'old' phone and she gets a new one, allowing her Facebook on the latest and greatest.

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Silver badge

Going back in time 10 years to scratched up screens with dust trapped underneath

Count me out, I'll stick with the glass screens that don't scratch and take the risk of it shattering (which has never happened to me since I'm not clumsy) rather than going back to plastic and dealing with the inevitable scratches and the fact that screens that flex inevitably lead to dust trapped underneath the screen. It didn't matter how careful I was about never having anything else in the pocket I kept my phone in, after a week it would start showing visible scratches. Maybe pocket lint is higher on the Mohs scale than I would have guessed :)

It would be nice to have the 'perfect' screen, but unfortunately materials science won't let that happen. You can't have something that is flexible, won't dent, is resistant to shattering and is hard enough to resist scratching from common items made of metal (keys, change etc.)

Curved screens are simply a gimmick, they'll not catch on.

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why focus on phones?

this would be great to attach to a windscreen or helmet visor

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