CES 2021: Ready for a rollable smartphone? LG, TCL tease rollable screens

And you thought foldables were the next big thing. Perhaps you'll simply roll up your next smart device.
Written by Larry Dignan, Contributor

LG Electronics teased a rollable smartphone at CES 2021 even as most of us are still trying to get used to foldables.

At the tail-end of LG's video press conference, the company teased the rollable device and its future potential. We'll save you the work: The tease lands last 30 seconds of the LG press conference. CNET is covering CES keynotes and press conferences live

Like most CES products, actual availability is a moving target if a product lands at all. LG, however, appears to be touting a new form factor beyond foldable devices. Think of LG's tease as a roadmap for the future. 

Perhaps the biggest takeaway is that consumer electronics giants that innovate on display technologies see a lot of demand for versatile devices that take up less of your pocket.

LG teased a talk by CTO Dr. I.P. Park Tuesday at 10:15 a.m. EST on the future of lifestyle innovation. Perhaps we'll see more about rollable devices. LG could use a new form factor to boost its smartphone standing. 

Later, TCL also showed a concept of a 6.7-inch rollable screen. TCL's 6.7 AMOLED Rollable Display could have implications for various devices too. TCL executives said that display innovations will be critical to the company's growth.

In a statement, TCL described the rollable display: 

The portable 6.7-inch AMOLED Rollable Display re-defines the standard form of a smartphone. With a rollable AMOLED display, it can be extended from 6.7-inches to 7.8-inches with a simple tap of the finger, turning it from a smartphone into a tablet and creating an entirely new user experience with its easily adaptable user interface. The smartphone is less than 10mm thick, making it significantly thinner than the foldable smartphone.

Here are screen shots of TCL's demo.  


TCL also highlighted new smartphones on deck, but rollables aren't launching soon.  

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