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Dual screens on foldable smartphones

51Degrees

9/21/2021 3:30 PM

Android Device Detection Smartphone Device Data

Foldable smartphones with multiple screens pose no problem to our Device Detection

The foldable smartphone – few thought it could be done. Would a touch screen still work if it was regularly bent in half? But smartphone technology has come a long way to prove the critics wrong.

The first commercially available foldable smartphone was released in 2018, and in the last few years, their popularity has risen to new heights. Not only do they create a sense of nostalgia for the 2000’s (the drama of closing a flip phone was a bonus), but they can be a handy way to have a bigger screen on the go.

One of the key features of foldable phones is the dual screens. Having multiple screens on one device is helpful for the consumer but could cause trouble to some device detectors. Not for us though. Read on to discover more about dual screens and how we upgraded our Device Detection to support dual screen identification.

What are dual screen phones?

It may seem obvious but dual screens (when referring to phones) mean a phone with two screens. More specifically, this refers exclusively to foldable phones. For example, when the phone is unfolded and showing the larger screen, that is screen one. If you fold and close the phone, depending on the phone model, there may be a smaller secondary screen – that is screen two. Therefore, this is a dual screen phone.

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The Samsung Galaxy Z Fold 3, showing the smaller of the two screens. The larger screen (screen one) is visible when the phone is fully open.

One of the benefits of having two screens is the portability created by the foldable hinge. When you open a foldable smartphone, the screen size can be like a tablet. And when you’re done, you can close the phone, reducing its size to easily fit into your bag.

Dual screens are great for the pockets of those on the go, but some device detectors may not be able to identify that the phone has two or more screens. Luckily for users of our real-time data services, detecting multiple screens on one device is a piece of cake.

Back in March 2020, when it finally seemed that foldable phones were here to stay and not an unsustainable trend, we introduced five new properties specific to detecting foldable phones:

  • IsScreenFoldable

  • NumberOfScreens;

  • SecondScreenInchesDiagonal;

  • SecondScreenPixelsHeight;

  • SecondScreenPixelsWidth.

The properties are self-explanatory, but if you need more information, our property dictionary is the source of all property definitions.

Are Apple falling behind Android?

Foldable smartphones are readily available on Android and have been for a while now. But Apple has been pretty quiet about exploring this part of the smartphone market.

There are murmurs of an iPhone Flip, but until things are officially confirmed by Apple themselves, it’s best not to get your hopes up anytime soon. That being said, was anyone else hoping for mention of a foldable phone in the latest Apple Event, or was it just us? The event seemed pretty underwhelming in comparison to previous announcements.

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The Samsung Galaxy Z Fold, one of the earlier foldable phones available to consumers.

Just a few years ago, foldable smartphones seemed like an impossible task. But now, phone vendors such as Samsung are leading the way in creating a new style of phone that solves a niche, but interesting dilemma.

Not everyone wants to carry a large tablet alongside their smartphone, and foldable smartphones combine the benefits of the two devices to create a portable solution. They also provide unique benefits exclusive to dual screen phones, such as the ability to view messages without opening the phone or showing a preview of the camera on the second screen.

As device detectors, we need to keep up with the ever-evolving smartphone industry to ensure our services are up to date and comprehensive. Whenever a new smartphone is released (with one, two, or more screens), we will update our device database with the device specification. And if Apple ever release a foldable phone, we’ll be ready!

To test out our dual screen device detection, get started with a free trial today.