A bi-folding RAZR clamshell smartphone could be available for purchase next year. Motorola is addressing one design flaw of the current folding smartphone. The overhauled Galaxy Fold becomes thicker, taller and rather uncomfortable to carry when folded. This happens when you fold the device around its vertical axis, whether you fold it outwards or inwards. To make the phone truly compact, the RAZR 2020 will be folded on its horizontal axis. If this report is true, the RAZR 2020 will be a spiritual successor to classic RAZR clamshell models. But in the near future, it will have a seamless and invisible hinge directly on the primary display.
Depending on rumors, the clamshell foldable RAZR will have 6.2-inch or 6.5-inch display when unfurled. Obviously, there would be a small secondary display on the outside when the device is folded to show date, time, notifications and other important information. If you want to know what the upcoming foldable RAZR could resemble, it’s a good idea to check the foldable phone patents applied by Lenovo, the parent company of Motorola. Compared to other foldable phone patents we have so far, they seem to depict something rather different. The patented design could be folded not just in the middle, but also in multiple points on its horizontal axis.
However, from the patent drawing, it seems that there’s no rigid space for an external display on the back. Yet, patent drawing is just a proposed design and the prototype could develop further. When the eventual marketable design of device enters the engineering stage, it should look much better. The foldable RAZR will be offered by Verizon in its midrange lineup. It won’t be powered by a powerful flagship processor and large capacity battery. Even so, the device will be quite important, as the new RAZR will be among the first mid-range smartphone with foldable design. It’s a sign that foldable design enters a new phase of maturity.
If the foldable design and its internal mechanism become much more mature, it could enter the entry-level segment in a few years. It’s only possible if the internal design is reliable enough and can be mass-produced at low cost. At the moment, the Galaxy Fold and Huawei Mate X are sold at $2,000 and $2,500, respectively. It means, we need to wait a bit longer before foldable smartphones become more accessible for budget users.