Back in the era of feature phones, flip models ruled the roost. However, with the launch of iPhone and other touchscreen devices, these phones soon became exhibits of the museum of technology. Even though manufacturers like Sony, Samsung, LG, and others continue to produce these models, touch screen and QWERTY smartphones are still their main business. In an attempt to go off the beaten track, Samsung is launching a smartphone, Galaxy Folder, along the lines of a flip-top phone. Before getting into the specs of the handset, let us take a short recap of why flip top phones lost out in the market.
Flip-Top Cell Phones – Paramount In 2000’s:
In the period between 2000 and 2006, flip-top phones were the highest selling mobile phone models. Every major mobile phone manufacturer offered at least 3-5 types of flip-top phones. The phones offered calling facilities, texting and some basic games and functions. However, some of them lacked good music playback and connectivity to the internet.
From 2007 onwards, a new wave of devices hit the market, known as smartphones. The first iPhone was launched, and it sold like hot cakes. It offered features that were unheard of in a mobile phone. Users could access the internet using it, listen to music and play games, send and receive emails and so on. In the subsequent years, the App Store was developed by Apple, and Google developed the Play Store. Different types of smartphones were available in the market that fit the budget of the high-level to mid- level consumers. People became more involved in texting via web applications and messenger services. This advancement in technology spelt doom for flip-top phones although Moto Razr series and similar models which had WAP/GPRS continued to sell. However, these phones could not stay ahead of the competition that smartphones gave them.
Not only were these flip-top models outperformed by the smartphones, they also had some flaws of their own. Most users complained of marks on their phone’s screen that were caused by constant contact with the keyboard. The phones also broke from the hinges due to high wear and tear. Competition and inferior design meant that consumers chose smartphones over flip-top phones.
Why Are Flip Phones Resurging Now?
Right now, the market for wireless devices is flooded with products that are similar to each other. Tablets, laptops and mobile phones can now perform common functions because of the features installed in them. Another addition to this bandwagon is the phablet. None of these devices have any exclusivity, and consumers have started feeling that by buying one, they are buying it all. In such a scenario, the flip-top phone is a welcome change from the basket of similar products.
Maintaining a flip-top phone is much easier than maintaining a smartphone. The glass cover of a smartphone is thin to facilitate easy hand movements over it and the metal casing is not hardy. Therefore, if you drop your phone, you will have to spend a hefty amount to get it repaired. Flip-top designs on the other hand are made of tough quality plastics. They seldom break when dropped. Sometimes the two parts get unhinged but this can be easily repaired.
Samsung Galaxy Folder- The First Flip-Top Smartphone
One of the largest smartphone makers, Samsung, has decided to renovate its smartphones along the lines of its flip-top models. The South Korean company has leaked images of its first flip-top smartphone. The phone is much different from its counterparts because it will have the dual features of a flip phone and a smart phone.
The specs of the new phone are quite similar to what Samsung offers through its current smartphones. The phone is slated to have an 8 MP camera, 2GB RAM, Android 4.2.2 Jelly Bean OS, and a 1.7 GHz quad-core Cortex-A7 CPU.
With no word yet on the release date, we’ll have to wait and watch to see whether The Samsung Galaxy makes a dent in the sales of touch screen based smartphones.
Will The Samsung Galaxy Folder Be A Success?
The leaked images have so far generated a buzz among technocrats and smart phone users. The features being offered are promising and the design is innovative. Being the world leader in terms of sales, Samsung is trying to stay ahead of its competitors by manufacturing smartphones in new designs.
The rising trend of usage of flip-top cell phones, new design and good features may help Samsung make money off the new smart phone when it is launched. The phone will be marketed in Korea as Samsung Galaxy Golden although it is doubtful if it will be available in the US market.