Before LG shuttered its mobile division in 2021, the company was teasing the arrival of what would have been the first rollable smartphone to launch on the market. Alas, the “LG Rollable” never saw a formal debut, but in a new hands-on video, we get a detailed look at the device that could have been.
LG Rollable was nearly complete
A Korea-based YouTuber obtained what looks like a nearly finalized version of the LG Rollable, complete with retail-ready packaging and more. The unboxing experience of the phone has a clever logo and design in place and even had a charger and paperwork in place for the device.
Looking first at the overall hardware, this video gives us a better look than ever at what LG had put together. The back of the device had a fingerprint sensor under its cameras and even a window to see the rolled-up display from the back of the phone.
Apparently, this also would have been LG’s first smartphone to ditch physical buttons for power and volume controls and, instead, use capacitive keys.
When rolled up, at least from the front, the Rollable looks pretty much like a normal smartphone, with a tall display that has no cutouts. But around the frame, there are some clear changes. The biggest difference is with the USB-C port, which was shifted off to the left side of the device along with the speaker. It’s an interesting choice, to say the least, but one that was surely necessary to facilitate the rolling screen. The selfie camera is also pushed into the bezel around the display.
How about the actual expanding screen? The rolling mechanism seems incredibly smooth in this demonstration, and it’s quickly obvious just how useful it could be. When showing a YouTube video, there’s much more space for the content, and letterboxing when in full screen is minimal. Plus, the larger size actually managed to trigger the tablet UI.
LG also threw in some very nice animations to its software when expanding the screen, as can be seen in the settings app at 4:32 in the video.
The LG Rollable had a clever rear display too
What’s especially cool is that the LG Rollable would have let you use the display from the back of the display when it was rolled up, with select widgets and a fully functional camera UI.
The full video is certainly worth a watch, as it really shows just how close LG was to launching this device. It’s truly a shame that it will never see the light of day, and no one else seems remotely close to launching a smartphone in this form factor.
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