Samsung runs into another display dilemma with S6 Edge
Can poor old Samsung catch a break? After a tough period during which its mobile business was squeezed to an inch of its life, Samsung finally has two promising smartphones – the Galaxy S6 and S6 Edge — which are praised in the tech press, and racking up millions of pre-orders.
But things aren’t quite that straightforward. First of all, Samsung’s new devices suffered a reported display problem, stopping them properly reading touch inputs around the bezel. Now the unusually-shaped S6 Edge is apparently suffering from production issues — and the problems may stop Samsung shipping the quantity of phones they’re hoping to.
The problem affecting yield issues for the S6 Edge reportedly relates to the handset’s so-called 3D Thermoforming technology, which makes possible the distinctive double-edged display used for the device. This production process is said to be running into troubles, and Samsung’s on the lookout for additional suppliers as a result.
According to reports in the Taiwanese press, Samsung’s original plans called for it to manufacture 8-8.5 million 3D glass units in Q2 2015. However, because of yield problems Samsung may only manage to ship 6-6.5 million units.
Getting another supplier on board could be the answer to Samsung’s issues, but 3D Thermoforming is a complicated process involving inserting glass between two molds and then heating it to 800 degrees Celsius, thereby allowing it to be pressed into a symmetrical shape. In other words, it’s not something that any display-maker can manage.
While this is only a rumor, if correct, Samsung may only be able to ship the Galaxy S6 Edge in limited quantities and/or certain regions at first: thereby having a significant negative impact on plans that the handset will help turn around Samsung’s mobile business.
We’ll keep you updated.