Put this under not-weird-but-actually-good flex. The split-screen mode that we’re seeing in the newly-announced Samsung Galaxy Z Flip is not exclusive to this clamshell foldable smartphone. Google says that other OEMs that are planning to release dual display or foldable display devices may soon also be able to support this feature on their future smartphones. It’s actually one of the pretty interesting features of the newest foldable phone to hit the market that will hopefully improve on the troubled Galaxy Fold.
Samsung calls this the “Flex Mode” on their Galaxy Z Flip. It is able to split the display into two four-inch screens and you will be able to do different things on each of the screens. For example, if you’re watching a YouTube video on the top half, you can read the comments on the other screen or searching for the next video you want to watch. You can also have a Google Duo call on the top half and then the call controls are on the bottom half of the screen.
Google tells The Verge that this mode will be available for other OEMs soon even as Samsung and Google worked on it for the Galaxy Z Flip. If both Samsung’s new smartphone and others like Motorola RAZR become successful, we will probably see a resurgence of clamshell-type devices. They became popular back in the day, before big displays were a thing, so it would be interesting to see how these dual-display or foldable display devices will evolve in this age of smartphones.
The Verge shares how Nintendo was able to do something similar with their Nintendo DS and Nintendo 3DS before. They were able to split the content of the games across two screens and it was useful for mobile gamers of course. It would also be interesting to see how they will eventually be able to translate and evolve this in smartphones.
If the Galaxy Z Flip and its Flex Mode is something that you want to experience already, it is being released in “limited quantities” in the U.S. and South Korea today, Valentine’s Day. You’ll get a Mirror Black version or a Mirror Purple version with a Mirror Gold variant becoming available in select countries eventually. It will cost you $1,380.