South Korean electronics giant Samsung announced Thursday it will release its cutting-edge foldable smartphone in September, despite a trade dispute between Seoul and Tokyo which analysts say will affect delivery.
— Samsung US Newsroom (@SamsungNewsUS) July 25, 2019
Tokyo earlier this month restricted export to South Korea of several key materials crucial to its world-leading electronics and smartphone companies, including market leader Samsung.
The decision was made in response to a South Korean court decision ordering Japanese firms that used forced labor during World War II to compensate Korean victims.
Samsung has spent nearly eight years developing the Fold in an effort to spark demand and potentially revive a sector that has been struggling for new innovations
Tokyo’s move has raised international concern about the effect on global tech supply chains and the possibility of price hikes for consumers worldwide.
Samsung’s Galaxy Fold is among the end products that will be affected as it relies on a chemical film produced by Japanese firm Sumitomo Chemical, said IHS Markit display research director Tadashi Uno.
Samsung Electronics to launch Galaxy Fold in September after screen problems: Samsung Electronics Co Ltd's first foldable smartphone, the Galaxy Fold, will go on sale from September in selected markets after the launch was delayed by screen problems… https://t.co/t0AnKL93Kr pic.twitter.com/ffWmg9iQ4L
— Asif Patel (@A51FR3D) July 25, 2019
Samsung had planned to launch the foldable phone in April but pushed back the release date after early reviewers reported screen problems after just days of use.
The smartphone giant said it has “made improvements” to the device since then.
Samsung has spent nearly eight years developing the Fold in an effort to spark demand and potentially revive a sector that has been struggling for new innovations.
Tech companies are already under pressure from a weakening global outlook, while the chip sector, in particular, is suffering from weak demand.
AFP with additional input by news desk