Samsung’s Galaxy Fold exhibited during the Mobile World Congress in Barcelona.
Joan Cros | NurPhoto | Getty Images
Samsung Electronics said Thursday its foldable smartphones will be available in South Korea on Sept. 6 in two colors, Cosmos Black and Space Silver.
After its South Korea launch, the Galaxy Fold will also be available in other countries including the United States, the United Kingdom, France, and Germany — Samsung did not specify their launch dates. Samsung’s U.S. website as well as the U.K. site directs users to join a wait list.
The world’s largest smartphone maker said the Galaxy Fold will be available in Singapore starting Sept. 18 and will cost around 3,088 Singapore dollars (around $2,232).
Some countries will also have a 5G-ready handset option, but Samsung said the handsets in Singapore will support LTE, which is a fourth-generation of mobile networks.
Galaxy Fold can be used both as a traditional smartphone and as a tablet, with a special foldable display screen. But, it carries a steep price tag of around $2,000.
The South Korean electronics giant was initially set to release the Galaxy Fold smartphone in late April. But reviewers encountered issues with early testing units, and Samsung delayed the launch to fix the glitches and canceled all pre-orders for the device.
In July, Samsung said it had rectified the issues and would launch the smartphone this month.
Global smartphone growth still low
Globally, the smartphone industry is still struggling for growth as many users are holding on to their devices longer. However, there are some bright spots in places such as India and Southeast Asia.
Numbers from International Data Corporation showed worldwide smartphone shipments fell 2.3% on-year for the three months to June. Figures released by research firm Canalys also pointed to a similar downward trend.
For its part, Samsung maintained pole position in the market ahead of China’s Huawei and iPhone maker Apple.
In fact, some analysts previously said the Galaxy Fold could be a “game-changer” in the way people use their smartphones in the next decade, but its steep price would likely deter widespread adoption. That said, a report this week said Samsung is working on a cheaper foldable alternative to the Galaxy Fold.
More broadly, however, the tech company’s main profit-making business that supplies memory components used in mobile handsets and enterprise servers has struggled due to low prices and a weakness in demand.