Rumors that Samsung is working on a foldable 5-inch smartphone that can shapeshift into a 7-inch tablet when opened have been circling for a while now. Now a new report claims that Samsung is looking to launch a duo of smartphones that sport bendable screens in 2017.

The news comes courtesy of publication Bloomberg which cites reliable sources who wished not to be identified.

"Samsung Electronics Co. is considering introducing two new smartphone models that will feature bendable screens, including a version that folds in half like a cosmetic compact, people familiar with the matter said," notes the publication.

One of the two smartphones — the second model — will reportedly have a 5-inch display when being used as a handset. This will morph into an 8-inch screen, akin to a tablet, when unfurled.

This is not the first time that murmurs of Samsung having bendable screen smartphones have surfaced. A previous report claimed that the company would debut a foldable smartphone as part of its Project Valley in 2017. This handset is believed to be the Galaxy X which will tout a 4K display and have a 5-inch foldable screen, which expands to 7 inches.

According to the current report, the bendable Samsung smartphones will be deploying OLED screens and hit the shelves in early 2017. OLED screens are easier to configure for folding when compared with LCDs as they do not need a backlight.

This release window would give Samsung an edge over rival Apple which traditionally unveils its flagship iPhones in the second half of the year.

Earlier in April, Samsung Display's Director Lee Chang-hoon disclosed at an investor's call that the development of the foldable OLED was on track as per the company's plans. Samsung Display was in discussion with its partners to work out the mass production, as well as the product's release time window.

The publication also confirmed that the venture has been codenamed "Project Valley." It disclosed that one of its sources let on that Samsung may debut both or one of the handsets at the Mobile World Congress (MWC) in Barcelona in February next year.

Bloomberg's sources also let it slip that Samsung could likely change the naming convention for the next-gen Galaxy Note phablet. While if it were to follow the current format, it would be called Note 6, Samsung, per the sources, may name it "Note 7" so that the series is at par with the flagship Galaxy S lineup.

Moreover, those hoping that the 2017 flagship Galaxy S8 and Galaxy S8 edge would have a bendable screen may have their hopes dashed. Why? As the source has let on, Samsung does not intend to market its foldable screen smartphone under the Galaxy S moniker.

This reaffirms that the rumored Galaxy X smartphone could potentially be the first in the bendable smartphone series.

Photo: Kārlis Dambrāns | Flickr

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