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LG rollable phone: Everything we know so far

LG rollable phone: Everything we know so far 2

LG made a big splash last month when it officially unveiled the Wing smartphone. The phone looks like a normal device upfront, but slide the main screen to the side and you’ve got a smaller screen underneath.

The LG Wing design is clearly unique in the modern smartphone space, but the company confirmed that it’s only the first device in its new Explorer Project line of standout phones. Fortunately, between leaks and official teases, we’ve got a good idea of what to expect next.

All signs are pointing to an LG smartphone with a rollable display, and we’ve rounded up all the major leaks, info drops, and rumors below to get a better idea of what to expect. Be sure to bookmark this page, as we’ll be updating it regularly!

LG rollable phone name and release date

The first apparent name we encountered for the LG rollable phone was Project B, thanks to a report by The Elec in July 2020. It was claimed that the project was named after CEO Kwon Bong-seok. However, this definitely seemed to be an internal code-name rather than the final name.

It’s worth noting that the LG Wing’s name seems to have started out as a code-name before the company actually settled on it as a final name. But “Project B” doesn’t roll off the tongue as easily as “Wing.”

Read: LG buyer’s guide — Everything you need to know

LetsGoDigital uncovered a potential name on November 4, noting that LG has applied for the name of Rollable. The filing notes that this is related to the smartphone space rather than the TV arena or anything else. It suggests that the company has settled on a name, but this isn’t a guarantee just yet.

As for a release date, The Elec first noted an “early 2021” launch before later adding that it’s expected in March 2021. This means it could show after the Samsung Galaxy S30 series, which is believed to be launching in January 2021.

LG rollable phone design

LG patents uncovered by Asia Time back in June showed a mobile device with an extendable display, activated by pulling on the side of the device. However, this patent also showed a rather weird folding mechanism too (i.e. a rollable foldable phone), enabling a pseudo-laptop form factor. Check it out below.

An LG rollable foldable device render.

In saying so, we’re guessing that this isn’t related to the LG Rollable or Project B device, and might just be an entirely different design LG was toying with. After all, combining a rollable/extendable display with a foldable form factor would probably be a gargantuan engineering challenge.

LetsGoDigital also uncovered a patent filing for an LG rollable smartphone with an extendable display on both the left and right sides. It’s also worth noting that retracting the displays results in a phone that offers something akin to a 16:9 screen rather than today’s 18:9, 20:9 and even 21:9 screen ratios. You can view an image below, courtesy of the outlet.

LG rollable phone patent

LG itself teased the rollable phone at the end of its Wing launch event, showing what appears to be a screen retracting into and extending out of a smartphone. You can still view this animation in the video by skipping to the 1:05:35 mark. And you can view a screenshot of the device below.

lg extendable smartphone display explorer project teaser

LG rollable phone specs and features

We haven’t heard anything about the LG rollable phone’s feature-set yet, bar the extending screen teased by the company before. It’s also unclear whether the new phone will offer Gorilla Glass or if the design means that they’ll need to forego this protective option.

As for horsepower, the LG Wing and Velvet both used upper mid-range silicon in the Snapdragon 765G processor. So we wouldn’t be surprised if the new phone adopts Snapdragon 700 series power again, as it could likely allow for a cheaper price tag. Then again, it’s also possible that we could see the Snapdragon 875 processor in here if the Korean brand is aiming way above $1,000.

A radical design like this doesn’t fill us with hope for a big battery, as the inside of the phone needs to accommodate the extending screen and associated mechanisms. Nevertheless, LG surprised us with the Wing and its 4,000mAh battery. Sure, that isn’t the largest size, but it’s definitely adequate and perhaps unexpected in light of the phone’s unique design.

Pricing and availability

Once again, pricing is an unknown quantity right now. But we can look to the LG Wing for an idea of what to expect from future Explorer Project devices. The swivel phone is available for roughly ~$1,000, so we’re guessing that the LG rollable device will start at a similar price point in the best case scenario. But the rollable seems like a more ambitious, technically challenging project, so we wouldn’t be surprised if we’re looking at similar pricing to current foldables instead.

The Elec previously noted a March 2021 launch window, which means we’ll likely see the phone coming out either in that same month or in April. The US and Korea will likely get the LG rollable phone first, as they were part of the first wave to get the Wing.

That’s all we know so far about the LG rollable phone! We’ll be regularly updating this article as the latest rumors and tidbits emerge.

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