The Galaxy Z Fold 2 is probably one of the most advanced smartphones you can buy in 2020. However, if there’s one thing missing, it’s S Pen compatibility. Samsung has bundled the stylus with all of the Note series smartphones, but not the Z Fold 2 (or the Galaxy Fold, for that matter). This was reportedly due to technical limitations, with the UTG (ultra thin glass) on the Z Fold 2 not thick enough to withstand the pressure from the S Pen’s tip.
Now, The Elec reports that Samsung is thinking about using AES (Active Electrostatic Solution) digitizer technology and thicker UTG glass on the next Galaxy Z Fold. This would allow for S Pen support—something that users have been asking for—which would also be a natural move on a big-screen device such as the company’s foldables.
For some context, a digitizer is hardware that receives analog info, and records it digitally. In touchscreen devices, the digitizer is a layer of glass that convert your touch commands into digital signals that the smartphone can understand.
Galaxy Note series smartphones use EMR (Electro Magnetic Resonance) digitizers, although the issue was that this tech is “too rigid” for the flexible, foldable screens of the Galaxy Z Fold 2. Instead, AES tech should offer better overall performance—at the expense of premium production costs. Still, AES might work with the foldable screen of the next Galaxy Z Fold.
UBI Research also said that the UTG on Samsung’s next foldable will be different. Currently the UTG has “good flexibility”, but due to its film-like characteristics, the display doesn’t fare well when pressure is applied with a stylus.
“To solve this, Samsung Display is developing UTG with a thickness of more than 60㎛ in cooperation with glass processing companies. He added, “As the thickness increases, the flexibility of UTG decreases. Therefore, the concept of UTG, which is currently being developed, will be applied with a thinner folded part and filled with a material having the same refractive index as glass.”– translated
For now, Samsung hasn’t confirmed if this rumour is true—although it would certainly be welcome news. The S Pen has traditionally been an exclusive to the Note series, but with the increased screen real estate that the Galaxy Z Fold 2 offers, a stylus would make a lot of sense. While the Korean company has yet to confirm any details on when the next foldable phone will be announced, it seems safe to assume that the form-factor is here to stay—for now.
So, what do you think? Leave your thoughts in the comments section below.