Company that made the first foldable phone wants to raise more money

Company that made the first foldable phone wants to raise more money
If you don't follow the smartphone industry that closely, you may not know that the first foldable smartphone introduced to the public was not the Samsung Galaxy Fold. In October, approximately four months before Samsung took the wraps off of its device, a small Chinese based firm called Royole unveiled the FlexPai. Unlike both the Galaxy Fold and the Huawei Mate X, the FlexPai is rough around the edges. The FlexPai is priced at $1,318 for the model with 128GB of storage, and $1,469 for the model with 256GB of storage. That compares with the $1,980 for the 512GB Galaxy Fold and $2,600 for the 512GB Mate X.

According to Bloomberg, Royole is looking to go public and seeks $1 billion in financing before it files for an Initial Public Offering (IPO). Besides producing the FlexPai, Royole is known for its flexible OLED panels, which means that it competes with Samsung and BOE Technology. The firm put into service last June, a new flexible panel production facility in Shenzhen that cost $1.5 billion USD to build.

During the last round of financing, Royole was valued at $5 billion. It is looking to raisethe  new financing at a valuation of $8 billion. Even if it raises that money and ends up going public, the future of Royale might not be in finished products that are sold directly to consumers. With phone manufacturers like Samsung, Huawei, Xiaomi, Oppo, TCL and eventually Apple expected to each launch a foldable phone sometime over the next two years, Royale might end up focusing on its business as a source of flexible screens to other companies.

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4 Comments

1. basher

Posts: 104; Member since: Sep 20, 2015

It's time for Apple to buy that small company and this way will soon launch its own foldable iPhone.

2. eausa

Posts: 86; Member since: Feb 28, 2019

Not interested in companies like this, who rushed their subpar quality product, mind you, with stolen tech from Samsung, just to say they're first. Besides that, really? A rubber hinge? lmao.

3. JayBEE

Posts: 177; Member since: Apr 03, 2014

Saw it in person at CES in Vegas this past January. FWIW, Royale said that the model, pictured above, was their developer model (outward folding display) and that the final model would have an inner folding display (similar to the upcoming Samsung Galaxy Fold).

4. odachek

Posts: 117; Member since: Sep 01, 2012

Go to Youtube and search "FlexiPai Fail" and click on the first video. Nobody wants to invest after watching that video.

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