Google’s highly anticipated Pixel Fold foldable device has reportedly faced a premature demise, lasting only four days, due to a series of design flaws. Ars Technica’s Ron Amadeo has shed light on the device’s issues.
Design Flaws Plague Pixel Fold
During limited usage, the Pixel Fold exhibited several troubling problems. First, the bottom pixels ceased to function, resulting in a row of fully illuminated pixels at the screen’s base. Additionally, the left half of the display became unresponsive to touch, and a white gradient appeared within a mere hour.
Exposed OLED Gap Suspected Culprit
The culprit behind the Pixel Fold’s downfall seems to be an exposed OLED gap, a flaw that has also been observed in other units. Ron Amadeo speculates that foreign objects may have entered the gap when the screen was closed, potentially causing damage to the panel.
Vulnerability to Sand, Crumbs, and Sharp Objects
Google has issued a warning to users about the vulnerability of flexible screens to sand, crumbs, and sharp objects. It emphasizes the importance of preventing contact with such materials to safeguard the device from potential harm.
Incomplete Plastic Layer Raises Concerns
Another issue contributing to the Pixel Fold’s susceptibility to damage is the incomplete coverage of the plastic layer on the OLED panel. Whether this was an intentional design choice or an oversight by Google remains uncertain. However, it raises concerns among users who have invested in these devices.
Flush Bezels Increase Fragility
Ron Amadeo highlights the problem of nearly flush bezels on the Pixel Fold, which allow the two sides of the display to make contact when the device is closed. Even the smallest particles or debris can lead to permanent damage to the screen.
Caution Advised for Foldable Devices
Considering the significant design flaws, potential buyers are urged to exercise caution before investing in foldable devices. Despite numerous iterations, this form factor has yet to achieve complete reliability and safety. The true extent of these issues will become evident in the coming days as the Pixel Fold is set to be released in multiple countries this week.
Ars Technica’s Ron Amadeo’s report on the Pixel Fold’s design flaws.