It has long been rumored that Samsung is working on a foldable smartphone. The company is expected to finally release its long-awaited device early next year. However, Huawei is reportedly rushing to be the first to market with a foldable smartphone, a device that’s foldable in the true sense of the word, not like the Axon M from ZTE.

The Nikkei reports, citing industry sources familiar with the matter, that Huawei is planning to release the first foldable smartphone with a flexible screen ahead of Samsung. This will enable the Chinese manufacturer to claim the title of being the world’s first company to launch such a handset.

The report adds that the foldable smartphone will have a flexible OLED panel manufactured by BOE, a display maker based in China. The first batch might be small but that’s beside the point when the objective is to beat Samsung to market.

“Huawei’s planned volume could be limited to some 20,000 to 30,000 units, or even less, for a small group of first-wave adopters,” a source familiar with Huawei’s plan told the scribe, adding that “The effort is mainly to demonstrate its technology capability and to attract the industry’s attention and media coverage.”

It’s unclear as yet when Huawei will actually release this device and how much it will cost. Samsung’s foldable smartphone is reportedly going to be out in the first quarter of 2019 so we should presumably see Huawei launch its device before then if there’s any truth to these reports that is.

Filed in Cellphones. Read more about Huawei.

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