Tech

Samsung made a ‘stretchable’ display that wraps around your wrist

Move over foldables, it's all about stretchables now.

Folding displays found in devices like Samsung’s Galaxy Z Flip are new, interesting, and now potentially so passé.

In a new paper published in Science Advances, researchers at the Samsung Advanced Institute of Technology revealed what they’re considering to be a major breakthrough in “stretchable” devices that can bend and mold to one’s body.

The research details several firsts for the stretchable form factor, including the use of a flexible OLED display and attached heart monitor that both managed to wrap neatly around someone’s wrist without losing their structural or functional integrity.

30%

Samsung says the device stretches 30 percent without breaking or falling apart.

1,000

And the device remains viable after being stretched 1,000 times.

Behind Samsung’s breakthrough is a special kind of molecularly modified “elastomer” that allows for flexibility without being too vulnerable to the heat produced by semiconductors.

The stretchable devices are being positioned for a different purpose compared to the consumer foldable displays found in the Galaxy Z Flip and Galaxy Fold. According to Samsung, stretchables could potentially be used in an array of medical devices or in fitness wearables that use biometrics.

Researchers say there’s still some work to be done before stretchable devices are commercialized. Future iterations of the technology will have to be even more resilient and higher resolution screens — the sensor accuracy will also have to be on par with non-stretchable wearables.

But with promising breakthroughs like this Samsung says in the not-so-distant future its technology might not be such a stretch after all.

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