In the eternal battle for supreme tech leadership between Samsung and LG, the former stole a lead in displays last year by introducing the Galaxy Note Edge with its sloping display that bends on one side. Just one side. Here at CES, the Note Edge has been surpassed by a new panel on show from LG Display: a 6-inch Active Bending OLED display. LG Display is keen to distinguish itself from LG Electronics, but the demo reel playing on the phone showing off the new screen featured LG's user interface and even LG's company jingle. Basically, whenever this dual-bending screen makes it into a real device, you can be sure the logo on that crazy phone will be LG's.
And it would be a categorically crazy phone. Most 6-inch devices are hard enough to handle with one hand as it is, but now there's the extra peril of accidentally tapping on something on the side screens while simply trying to navigate your way around the device. Then again, there's something delightfully futuristic about these bending displays. It's no more practical to have video and music controls on the side rather than the front of the phone, but it's certainly a cool way to perform those really basic tasks. Almost as cool as that Facebook notification floating in alerting the user that "Spiderman added you as a friend."
The one thing about LG Display's new panel that might disappoint people is its resolution, which measures only 1280 x 720. It's not really one for pixel density enthusiasts, though the company claims a contrast ratio of 100,000:1, and the typically awesome viewing angles and deep blacks of OLED screens were present and easily apparent to the naked eye. The display, even with touch sensitivity built in, measures a mere 0.7mm in thickness and can reach a brightness of 300 nits. LG Display hasn't yet set a roadmap for mass production, though the temptation to one-up Samsung will surely be too strong for this to remain a mere prototype.