Ask Paul: March 15 (Premium)

Happy Friday, and happy Ides of March. Here’s another attempt at answering some great questions from readers.
Folding phones
christian.hvid asks:

Many would agree that foldable phones are the Next Big Thing in mobile, and for obvious reasons … However, all the designs we've seen so far are devices that are made up of two halves. In other words, a phone with a typical aspect ratio of 1:2 folds out into a square tablet, which is almost useless. Obviously, the right design is to have a three-segment fold-out, thus forming a tablet with the perfect aspect ratio of 3:2 (coincidentally, a 6" phone would turn into a 9.7" tablet, also known as the classic iPad size). Do you know if anyone is actively trying to achieve this? Or is it just too difficult?

No, I’m not aware of anyone working towards what I think of as an “accordion-ing” design, not yet. But it’s early days, and companies will need a few generations to even deliver a two-pane folding phone that makes sense in that it’s thin, light, and reliable enough for general use. Even still, I wouldn’t describe the aspect ratios of the current devices as useless. If you look at this image from the Android Q Beta 1 announcement, you see two very tall and thin displays that together look pretty cool. Not sure what the experience of using just one display would be like, of course. But the aspect ratio of the fully-opened device is, wait for it, 3:2. And maybe the move to folding displays will lead to new aspect ratios that are today unfamiliar and even odd-looking.

But if you don't like this, I bet we're going to see a lot of different takes on the dual-screen design in the next year or two.

On a related note: the selfie cam. Over the last few years, we've seen a number of more or less innovative solutions for getting it out of the way, ranging from notches to pinholes to manual and motorized sliding tops. But nobody has dared to do the obvious thing: removing it altogether. Or even better, putting out two versions of every major phone: one for teenagers with a selfie cam, and one for adults without one. I certainly wouldn't miss it - the selfie cam is just about the most ridiculous and useless feature a phone could have, and I would happily trade it for a few more square millimeters of screen real estate.

Yeah, I only rarely use a selfie-cam, but I think I’d miss it if it were gone. (And I do use it sometimes.) I suspect that so many people do use it that removing it would be disastrous. It’s more likely that technological advances will simply make it possible for the camera to get smaller and smaller and work from behind the display.
helix2301 asks:

Paul my wife and I are debating go we get HBONOW (we’re cord cutters) or do we wait till its over and spend $25 dollars to buy the last season of Game of Thrones. Spoilers online and FB / Twitter can always be cause for concern since they tend to spoil a week to week show like GOT.

We were going...

Gain unlimited access to Premium articles.

With technology shaping our everyday lives, how could we not dig deeper?

Thurrott Premium delivers an honest and thorough perspective about the technologies we use and rely on everyday. Discover deeper content as a Premium member.

Tagged with

Share post

Please check our Community Guidelines before commenting

Windows Intelligence In Your Inbox

Sign up for our new free newsletter to get three time-saving tips each Friday

"*" indicates required fields

This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.

Thurrott © 2024 Thurrott LLC