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Oppo X 2021: This is Oppo’s answer to the Samsung Galaxy Z Fold 2 and Huawei Mate Xs

During Oppo’s Inno Day 2020 event, the Chinese smartphone maker has introduced the Oppo X 2021, a new prototype device that can transform from a normal smartphone to a larger screen tablet. Instead of going with the usual foldable form factor like the Samsung Galaxy Z Fold 2 and the Huawei Mate Xs, the X 2021 features a rolling OLED display which is said to have overcome the creasing issue that’s often found on typical folding displays.

When it’s closed, the device looks like a typical full screen smartphone with a 6.7″ display with curved corners. If you need a big screen experience, the device can be stretched to reveal an expanded 7.4″ display.

Instead of using mechanical hinges, the new Oppo device features two drive motors to expand and retract the screen. This is to ensure that stress is equally distributed on the display whenever the screen is expanded. For a smoother experience, they have added a whole bearing measuring 6.8mm in diameter on the side of the phone to allow the screen to bend with minimal crease.

According to Oppo, you can adjust the size of the display based on your actual needs. This offers greater flexibility compared to current folding smartphones that come with a fixed display.

For better durability, the expandable concept device features a 2-in-1 plate design to support the screen and it’s also protected by a high-strength screen laminate that’s 0.1mm thin.

At the moment, the X 2021 is only a concept and there’s hardly any details of its internal specs. From what we can tell, there’s no 3.5mm headphone jack and there’s a visible USB-C port at the bottom right of the device.

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Over at the rear, it gets a slim but long camera bump that comes with what appears to be a triple-camera setup. What’s interesting is the panels at the rear are split at an angle for a more futuristic look.

According to Oppo, they have applied for 122 patents during the development of this concept and 12 are related to the rollable mechanism. At the moment, it isn’t clear when Oppo would introduce a commercial device with a rollable display. Nevertheless, it is still a rather interesting alternative to the current foldable smartphones.

You can check out the hands-on video below:

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Alexander Wong