The First Bendable Phone

In November, just days before Samsung teased its flexible display phone, Royole burst onto the scene with the Flexpai, the world’s first bendy phone. Sadly, demos were held in San Francisco, and I was in New York. By the time I found out, there simply wasn’t enough time for me to get there.

Thankfully, Royole brought the FlexPai to CES 2019, and I finally got to check it out. Unlike Samsung’s teaser, the Flexpai isn’t a prototype, it’s something you can buy right now if you don’t mind dropping a cool $1,320. That said, you’d have to be delusional to buy in because while the idea behind bendy devices is super exciting, the FlexPai falls flat.

Without even considering its general specs—which aren’t really notable aside from its 7.8-inch flexible AMOLED display—the Flexpai has a lot of issues. Even when its screen is fully open, the Flexpai is never truly flat. Its screen often has a bump or a slight ripple in it, a likely side effect of multiple bending sessions. Meanwhile, actually closing and opening its display is a constant struggle. And on a couple occasions, just bending that display caused the Flexpai to randomly turn off.

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