Independent Galaxy Fold robot test reveals more about the hinge durability

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Last updated: October 1st, 2019 at 20:52 UTC+01:00

The Galaxy Fold has been put through another durability test, this time by San Francisco-based extended warranty service provider, SquareTrade. The company drop-tested the device, but also came up with a way to test Samsung’s claims on the Fold’s hinge durability. SquareTrade used its own robot to fold and unfold the phone 120,000 times in order to ascertain the hinge’s durability.

Galaxy Fold hinge put to the test

About six months ago, Samsung released a video showcasing the Galaxy Fold’s testing procedure for the complex mechanical hinge. The company used a series of robots to fold and unfold the phone repeatedly, claiming that the Galaxy Fold should be good for 200,000 folds. That meant it would be good for 100 folds per day for five years.

SquareTrade recently simulated Samsung’s testing methods using its robotic contraption and the redesigned Galaxy Fold. The company tested the durability of the hinge by folding and unfolding the device 120,000 times and the results don’t seem to quite match Samsung’s previous claims.

In its own testing environment, SquareTrade found that the Galaxy Fold developed a pixel blob after 18,500 folds. This blob appears similar to the screen defect that was reported recently. It may have something to do with the inherently fragile nature of the foldable display panel.

One false alarm and many folds later, the hinge test was concluded at 120,000 folds, or just about three years at 100 folds per day, with what SquareTrade describes as “deteriorated hinge action.” The company also drop-tested the phone from a height of 6 feet (1.83m) with unsurprisingly disastrous results for both the foldable screen and the cover display. Check out the video below for the full test.

At the end of the day, the hinge seems to be doing its job fine. In practice, the phone would have to be folded hundreds of times a day over several years to top a total of 120,000 folds, and it’s only fair to expect some wear after a while. More worrying is the blob on the flexible screen, mainly because the reasons why it develops aren’t very clear. Samsung is investigating the defect reported last week so we should know more about that eventually.

Have these results changed your opinion about the Galaxy Fold? Share your thoughts in the comment section below.

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