TCL Fold 'N Roll Concept Is The Latest Wild Take On Morphing Smartphone Displays

tcl fold n roll news
We've seen various takes from smartphone OEMs when it comes to increasing available screen real estate. Besides making displays bigger (many flagships have 6.7-inch and larger displays), companies like Samsung and Motorola launched smartphones that unfold to give a larger viewing area. LG and TCL have both shown off smartphone concepts with rollable displays that unfurl like a scroll. In contrast, LG's Wing has a swiveling primary display that reveals a smaller secondary display underneath.

TCL is looking to take the prize with the most innovative display in a smartphone by far with its Fold 'n Roll concept, which debuted today. The Fold 'n Roll combines the folding screen mechanism like what we've seen with the Samsung Galaxy Z Fold 2 with the rollable screen shown off in previous TCL concepts.

tcl fold n roll 2

So, in its standard form, the Fold 'n Roll has a display that measures 6.87 inches across. With the folding mechanism, the display expands out to 8.85 inches. Finally, when the rest of the display unfurls via its rolling mechanism, it reaches its "final form" with an overall diagonal measurement of 10 inches -- well into tablet territory.

Just looking at the smartphone shows that this is an exercise in engineering ingenuity, but it also looks incredibly complex. There are already concerns about the longevity of hinges with current folding smartphones like the Motorola Razr 5G and Galaxy Z Flip 5G, but adding a power retracting/extending rollable display into the mix is just asking for trouble when it comes to reliability.

Unfortunately, this is merely a mere design exercise on the part of TCL, and there are currently no plans to introduce a similar device to the public -- at least not anytime soon. However, it's entirely possible that once the flexible screen technology matures that we might see something like this for public consumption a few years from now.