One of the big draws of the Mobile World Congress in Barcelona, which kicks off today, is expected to be the latest foldable smartphone technology.
No need to be a tech guru to understand the advantages of watching video on a large portable screen and then being able to fold it and put it away in one’s pocket or handbag.
A major Korean manufacturer will be showing the latest iteration of a foldable device which it launched as a prototype last year. Likely to become one of the iconic consumer electronic devices of the next ten years, foldable or bendable phones rely on a number of technologies, including OLED and bendable batteries. Other manufacturers are expected to also present their prototypes with many designing a phone that can unfold to become a tablet. This could lead towards the convergence between the smart phone, the tablet and the laptop computer.
IEC has been paving to way for these new technologies with a number of international standards. Foldable portable consumer devices will require flexible or bendable batteries to power them. IEC 62899-501-1 is a quality assessment standard for flexible or bendable primary or secondary cells, i.e batteries. The publication was issued at the beginning of the year by IEC TC 119: Printed electronics, and describes test methods for bendable batteries.
Organic light emitting diode (OLED) is a display technology that is already being used in many mobile devices and TVs, and the next generation of these panels will be flexible and bendable. IEC TC 110 issues standards for OLED displays.