Both LG and Samsung announced smartphones with curved displays last month. LG calls theirs the G Flex, while Samsung calls their device the Galaxy Round. Now we know you probably don’t care about these since they run Android, but you can’t help but stop and appreciate the kind of research and design that went into these.
What’s different about a curved screen compared to a regular flat display? Think about Mexican food for a moment. There are hard shell (stiff) and soft shell (flexible) tacos. The beef and vegetables, those are the pixels and all the fancy electronics needed to render images. Hard shell “tacos” are hard because they’re made out of glass. There are probably at least 100 factories, each of them absurdly large, pumping out hard shell tacos each and every day in multiple sizes. Soft shell tacos on the other hand, they’re made out of plastic, and they need entirely different factories. Hence why the G Flex and Round and incredibly limited.
When will we get iPhones and iPads using these kind of displays? Back to the taco analogy, it’s all a matter of building up the resources needed to make all those panels. As much as LG and Samsung would like to, they can’t just snap their fingers and mass produce a brand spanking new technology. Maybe we’ll see this show up in the iWatch, maybe not, it really is too soon too tell.