Facepalm: Some reviewers are reporting screen problems with their Galaxy Fold review units. While this doesn't seem like a good look for Samsung, some of the issues may be the reviewers' own fault for not paying attention.
Members of the tech press have only had the Galaxy Fold for a couple of days and are already experiencing issues. According to The Verge, their review unit somehow got a piece of debris stuck underneath the screen causing a small bulge. Eventually, the bulge gave way and the screen broke.
To his credit, he seems to have treated the phone just fine, or at least as well as he would any other phone. He does say that a piece of molding clay that his team uses for video shoots could have somehow made its way into the phone. Fortunately, Samsung is sending a replacement unit although they haven't made an official statement on the matter.
Both Bloomberg's Mark Gurman and Marques Brownlee aka MKBHD had completely unusable review units as well. However, this was likely because both Mark and Marques peeled off a protective layer of the screen. Apparently, they thought it was removable (possibly a regular screen protector). To be fair, Samsung does have a label on the phone explicitly warning not to remove the protective layer.
The phone comes with this protective layer/film. Samsung says you are not supposed to remove it. I removed it, not knowing you’re not supposed to (consumers won’t know either). It appeared removable in the left corner, so I took it off. I believe this contributed to the problem. pic.twitter.com/fU646D2zpY— Mark Gurman (@markgurman) April 17, 2019
PSA: There's a layer that appears to be a screen protector on the Galaxy Fold's display. It's NOT a screen protector. Do NOT remove it.— Marques Brownlee (@MKBHD) April 17, 2019
I got this far peeling it off before the display spazzed and blacked out. Started over with a replacement. pic.twitter.com/ZhEG2Bqulr
Last but not least, Steve Kovach from CNBC tweeted that the screen on his Galaxy Fold was flickering.
After one day of use... pic.twitter.com/VjDlJI45C9— Steve Kovach (@stevekovach) April 17, 2019
While cynics will likely point out that a ~$2,000 device should be flawless, keep in mind that this is new technology in a first generation product. Samsung likely knew there would be kinks to work out as early adopters discovered them. While that doesn't absolve Samsung, it does mean that we should expect a few bumps (literally and figuratively) on a phone that's otherwise pretty revolutionary.
That said, everyone remembers the Galaxy Note 7 disaster and any structural problems with a Samsung mobile device (especially one this expensive) is sure to be met with some trepidation. Samsung probably only made a limited number which would surely help the company to better manage any problems that arose.
The Galaxy Fold is currently out of stock and seems to be in high demand. Hopefully, that demand pushes Samsung to iron out the quirks with this first generation Fold into a much improved second generation.