Skip to main content

The Galaxy Fold launch was embarrassing. Even Samsung’s CEO admits it

Samsung Galaxy Fold Announcement | Samsung Unpacked
Julian Chokkattu/Digital Trends

Samsung’s CEO called the launch of the Galaxy Fold “embarrassing” and admitted that he launched the troubled phone before it was ready for prime time.

The company’s foldable smartphone marked an exciting step forward in design – until review devices began to break after just a few days of use. Reviewers testing the device complained of issues with the screen, with some phones becoming completely unusable. Samsung recalled the device and delayed its April 25 launch date.

“It was embarrassing,” said Samsung Electronic CEO DJ Koh according to The Independent. “I pushed it through before it was ready.”

Koh attributed the rush to release the phone to increased competition from Chinese smartphone companies Huawei and Xiaomi, which both planned to release foldable smartphones of their own.

“I do admit I missed something on the foldable phone, but we are in the process of recovery,” he said. “At the moment, more than 2,000 devices are being tested right now in all aspects. We defined all the issues. Some issues we didn’t even think about, but thanks to our reviewers, mass volume testing is ongoing.”

After the screen issues, Samsung pushed out the Galaxy Fold’s launch date to May, then July, then before July – and now it’s not clear when the phone will come out. Koh said the release is still happening, but could not say when you’ll actually be able to buy a Galaxy Fold. AT&T canceled pre-orders for the phone in mid-June, offering customers a $100 gift card for their trouble.

Since the launch of the iPhone in 2007, smartphones have largely looked the same – a glass rectangle. The Galaxy Fold and other foldable phones could change all that, if companies can get the technology right. Koh still sees folding phones as the future, but said smart devices with unique form factors might eventually overtake smartphones in popularity.

“Foldable will last a couple of years,” he said. “Another form factor is a possibility, but I will say that once 5G and the internet of things are available [together], we must think, rather than smartphones, we must think smart devices. Smartphones may decline but new devices will emerge.”

For what it’s worth, Digital Trends never had any problems with our sample Galaxy Fold, which Mobile Editor Julian Chokkattu called “an exciting step toward a foldable future” in his review.

Editors' Recommendations

Mathew Katz
Former Digital Trends Contributor
Mathew is a news editor at Digital Trends, specializing in covering all kinds of tech news — from video games to policy. He…
The Samsung Galaxy Watch FE is official, and it has an incredible price
A render of the Samsung Galaxy Watch FE.

We’re still likely a month away from Samsung’s next Unpacked event, but that hasn’t stopped the company from making a surprise announcement today. Out of nowhere, Samsung has just announced the Galaxy Watch FE as its newest smartwatch.

As leaks suggested, the Samsung Galaxy Watch FE is a new budget model in Samsung’s smartwatch lineup. Like Samsung’s FE smartphones, such as the Galaxy S23 FE, the Galaxy Watch FE will give you a meat-and-potatoes smartwatch experience at the expense of a few higher-end features — but at a very attractive price.

Read more
The Galaxy Z Flip 6 price just leaked, and it’s bad news
The Samsung Galaxy Z Flip 5's hinge.

We have bad news for those who hope to purchase the Samsung Galaxy Z Flip 6 when it's released, as it looks like the phone will be more expensive than the Galaxy Z Flip 5, which it will replace.

According to SmartPrix, the Galaxy Z Flip 6 will cost $1,100 for the 256GB model and $1,220 for the 512GB model, representing a $100 price increase over the previous model. Earlier today, we reported that SmartPrix also anticipates the same price hike for the Galaxy Z Fold 6, which could start at a whopping $1,899. Samsung will likely announce the Galaxy Z Flip 6, Galaxy Z Fold 6, and Galaxy Watch 7 at an Unpacked event in Paris, France, on July 10. All three new products should be available to the public soon after. We're also excited for the event as it may be the launchpad for the Galaxy Ring smart ring.

Read more
The Samsung Galaxy Z Fold 6 may cost more than you feared
The Galaxy Z Fold 4 (left) and Galaxy Z Fold 5 rear panels.

The Samsung Galaxy Z Fold 4 (left) and Galaxy Z Fold 5 Andy Boxall / Digital Trends

Samsung is slated to unveil the Galaxy Z Fold 6 -- along with the Z Flip 6, Galaxy Watch 7 series, and the Galaxy Ring -- sometime next month. But ahead of the formal announcement, a flurry of leaks has given us a fairly good idea of the massive design change that the Fold 6 will undergo. The improvements, however, will come with a price hike, as a new leak points out.

Read more