The first major curved phone release has had a bumpy start — literally — with reports of minute lumps and wrinkles in the screen of the LG G Flex.
The G Flex is basically a spec-clone of LG's flagship G2 phone, except that it comes with a 6-inch curved display. According to a story in the Korea Times, the G Flex, which is already widely available throughout Asia, has been plagued by reports of small bumps appearing on the phone's curved OLED display.
The Times report goes on to say that LG is aware of the issue and assures consumers that it has no effect on the phone's performance. Furthermore, LG's reps say that the bumps will disappear over time and can be massaged flat.
Don't play rough
While I was initially dismissive of curved displays, I'm still interested to see how they evolve. The world isn't flat, and a contoured phone could open the door for designers to build fantastic new mobile creations. Consumers may come to accept small, temporary imperfections as a side effect of a cool new technology. The no-impact-on-performance being a big "if" in that statement.
According to the company, the bumps are due to "key components inside the G Flex such as the glass cover, OLED display, battery and frame [being] elastic, [therefore] excessive or frequent force that flattens the device may produce bumps." According to LG, that flexibility has been included "to protect the device from damage from sudden impacts such as being sat on or laid down on." LG advises consumers not to use "frequent, excessive force on the device or screen." Right. We never do that, do we?
This promotional video meant to demonstrate the Flex's self-healing back panel (which apparently does not translate to the front display) shows how the Flex has been designed to bend under force.
The G Flex is currently available in several Asian markets, with US availability coming this quarter on AT&T, T-Mobile, and Sprint. (The phone will be available for pre-orders on Sprint beginning January 31; no other carriers have announced firm dates).
We've reached out to LG for comment on whether #bumpgate will have any effect the G Flex's planned release.
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