This should not be just a decoration! Why are the secondary screens of small folding machines getting bigger and bigger?

Why are small folding machines' secondary screens getting bigger when they shouldn't just be decorations?

【PhoneAuto】After many years of development of small foldable screen phones, it can be seen clearly that their secondary screens have become smaller and smaller.

Recently, Motorola’s new generation of foldable phones, the moto razr 40 Ultra and moto razr 40, were officially released. These two new models not only have an “explosive” price, but also have strong forward-looking design. Motorola made a small change to the new phone by increasing the size of the secondary screen to 3.6 inches, which means that the secondary screen of small foldable phones will no longer be useless. It can meet more usage needs of users.

In fact, the use logic of the external screen of horizontal foldable screen phones and the secondary screen of vertical small foldable screen phones is quite different, or their status is not the same. The external and internal screens of horizontal foldable screen phones are both important, as they are equivalent to the addition of a phone and a tablet. Some users may prefer the external screen mode, while others may prefer the internal screen mode. The structure of vertical small foldable screen phones means that they can only use the internal screen as the main screen, and the secondary screen can only be in a subordinate position.

However, this does not mean that the secondary screen is not important. On the contrary, the secondary screens of small foldable screen phones are not fully developed at this stage, and the secondary screens of many products are functionally equivalent to a smartwatch, or even less useful than a smartwatch.

This is the embarrassment of small foldable phones, and the moto razr 40 series has largely changed this situation. In fact, the trend of the secondary screen of small foldable screens becoming larger and larger has become a trend. The previously released vivo X Flip used a 3.0-inch horizontal secondary screen, and the secondary screen of the upcoming Samsung Z Flip5 will also be upgraded to 3.4 inches, which is much larger than the current Z Flip4’s 1.9-inch (right angle) secondary screen.

Why are there these changes to the small foldable phone’s secondary screen? There are many reasons, mainly because applications and gameplay are constantly evolving and the secondary screen of the small foldable phone needs to be enlarged to meet more needs. In fact, this is also the inevitable path that small foldable screen phones must take. The larger secondary screen area gives it higher recognition and brings more variable designs.

If you ask people to choose between a horizontally foldable screen phone and a vertically foldable screen phone, most people would choose the former for a very simple reason: the folding experience of the small foldable screen phone is relatively weak and the secondary screen technology of many products is not very noticeable. So why should consumers choose small foldable screen phones?

So, to meet more needs, the larger secondary screen has arrived.

The moto razr 40 series has achieved consistency between the internal and external screens in terms of practicality, and has particularly strengthened the presence of the secondary screen. It’s not just about making a bigger screen.

The phone supports full coverage of the Top 50 popular applications, with coverage of 80% of the Top 200 popular applications, and more applications will be adapted in the future. For example, WeChat, which is commonly used by users, is fully supported by the moto razr 40 series. There is also navigation, which is commonly used when traveling. The phone achieves internal and external screen linkage: navigation can be set on the internal screen and then checked on the external screen when the phone is closed, or navigation can be quickly set on the external screen and then continued to be viewed on the internal screen.

In terms of gameplay, the moto razr 40 series is also more diverse. Taking photography as an example, moto razr 40 Ultra innovatively adopts a dual-screen imaging function based on the preview of the large external screen, which is very helpful for users to compose their shots. At the same time, the moto razr 40 series has launched a brand new IP – moo (Moer), which provides a variety of lock screen clock styles and eight functional cards with strong interactivity. In addition, the moto razr 40 Ultra has a higher playability tent mode, which can fold the phone halfway and play the set text in a loop.

Moreover, the secondary screen of the Moto Razr 40 series has surpassed the display quality of most straight-screen phones. It has a resolution of 1056×1066 and supports a high refresh rate of 144Hz. It is very easy to operate.

Currently, there are two irreversible trends in the design of small foldable screen phones. One is that they are becoming thinner and lighter, with more variety in colors and patterns. The other is that the size of the secondary screen is getting larger and the design is more variable, with high recognition.

Below are the designs of several mainstream small foldable screen phones’ secondary screens. It can be seen that their designs have a wide range of differences, not only in appearance but also in the placement of the screens. This creates a “blooming” design pattern for small foldable screen phones. Unlike conventional phones, the secondary screen of small foldable screen phones can be designed in irregular shapes, which is very innovative and has high recognition for users.

Currently, placing the secondary screen of small foldable screen phones on the upper half of the body, occupying almost half of the body area, is a relatively safe design solution, and many products on the market have indeed done this. Since the structure of small foldable screens is “folded in half,” it may still be difficult to place the secondary screen beyond the middle folding hinge at this stage.

However, phone manufacturers can still come up with solutions, such as a dual-screen design, which may provide more ways to play. The upcoming Samsung Z Flip5 reportedly uses a dual-screen design, with a smaller screen next to it that displays information such as the clock and battery level. The larger secondary display is square in design and allows users to easily interact with notifications, quick settings, and widgets without opening the phone. It can also serve as a camera viewfinder.

One of the reasons why mobile phone manufacturers dare to make the secondary screen of small folding screen phones larger is that glass is becoming more and more durable against drops.

From a certain perspective, the current competition in the folding screen phone market is actually a competition of technology and materials. Folding screens are a highly dense field of technology, with innovations needed to support everything from the screen and hinge to the frame, buttons, and screws.

Of course, as technology matures, the current focus for folding screen phones is no longer on screen materials, because the anti-drop capabilities of many folding screen phones are improving year by year, and their practicality is approaching that of regular phones. Additionally, the secondary screen of small folding screen phones is not very large and is not easily damaged from drops. The current focus for phone manufacturers is on improving the ecological applications of small folding screen phones.

We will continue to update Phone&Auto; if you have any questions or suggestions, please contact us!


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