Google may have avoided a Pixel Watch, but a Pixel Fold still seems to be on the way – following a leak last August who revealed that the company plans to launch its first foldable Pixel phone in late 2021, Korean industry website Elec report now that Samsung will begin production of foldable OLED panels in October for the next folding phones from Google, Vivo and Xiaomi, all of which would be revealed at the end of this year.
Google hasn’t exactly kept its foldable phone ambitions a secret; in 2019 he published patent applications for its own screens and admitted he had been prototyping them for some time, story CNET that he did not yet have “a clear use case.” But now it looks like Google has a collapsible code name “Passport,” which could be almost ready to be announced. 9to5Google even spotted a new reference last month in Android 12 code, alongside other code names that would be the upcoming Pixel 6 and Pixel 5a 5G. Elec says it will have a single 7.6-inch panel that folds inward, while Vivo’s next phone will have an 8-inch main screen and a 6.5-inch outer screen. He didn’t mention the screen size of the new Xiaomi phone.
It’s not clear whether a Pixel Fold would actually ship with a display designed by Google itself, although it is possible; Samsung acts as a subcontractor for many other companies, for example producing some of Apple’s local processors. Either way, part of the screen sandwich may still largely belong to Samsung itself: ANDNews reports that Samsung will provide its exclusive ultra-thin protective glass (which is technically manufactured by the German manufacturer Schott) to other smartphone manufacturers, and Google should use it.
Xiaomi already announced a foldable phone earlier this year, the Mi Mix Fold, but it looks like he’ll have a second. Elec Also reports that Oppo will delay a new foldable phone until 2022, with a 7.1-inch main screen and a smaller exterior between 1.5 and 2 inches diagonally.