iFixit dismantled a Samsung Galaxy Fold to try to understand what are the structural problems that led to the failure of several screens and postpone the launch of this highly anticipated device.
The iFixit technicians claim to have identified four potential reasons for the problems with the Samsung Galaxy Fold in addition to the film which, if removed, accentuates the problems and is not the main cause.
The problem is unavoidable at the moment for any folding display: OLED screens are really fragile. Folding repeatedly and opening these displays inevitably creates greater vulnerabilities.
Since OLEDs can easily be damaged due to debris and moisture, the 7mm gap in the Galaxy Fold’s hinge allows dust and debris to enter below the screen. And this aspect causes serious problems
These bezels are super slim—they barely cover two millimeters of the display, while leaving a 7 mm gap at the top and bottom. That doesn’t seem like much protection to us.
This seems to have been the most common problem that hit the Galaxy Folds.
As iFixit explains, each person tends to close and reopen the Fold differently, with different forces and with different gestures. Robots, on the other hand, perform standard and always identical movements. Among people, there are those who tend to open the Fold like a book and with their thumbs, who presses on the lower center of the left panel of the device.
The Fold does not have a pre-marked line in the center of the display to guide the screen when it bends. This is probably an advantage for the aesthetics of the device because in this way the screen resembles a large display instead of two distinct panels.
iFixit also pointed out about the protective film inserted by Samsung, which according to some should not be removed to avoid problems.
Beyond the display, the iFixit also worried about the longevity of the cables and the components that connect the electronics in the two halves of the device. The risk is that, after a few months, these cables will start to fail, causing the device to malfunction.