Foldable smartphones may be popular in 2022, but one manufacturer — Samsung — clearly dominates this market. The Korean smartphone manufacturer continues to sell more foldable handsets than any other manufacturer, and it has done so for more than three years, having recently launched its latest foldable phone. Samsung’s success comes despite competitors such as Huawei, Honor, Oppo, and Motorola experimenting with various foldable smartphone models. However, a variety of factors, ranging from a lack of availability in international markets to unfinished software, have kept these companies from posing a threat to Samsung.
The fact that Google has been delaying the release of its foldable smartphone for a long time aided Samsung’s luck. The Pixel Fold, Google’s foldable phone, was supposed to be released in the fall of 2021. However, before abandoning the project, Google abruptly canceled its launch. Then, much to everyone’s surprise, Google resurrected the project in 2022, with some reports speculating on a launch as soon as the end of this year. However, new information suggests that the Google Pixel Fold will be available to consumers in 2023.
Google Pixel Fold likely to be made in China
While it is too early to speculate on the Google Pixel Fold’s hardware, a New York Times report reiterates the possibility of the device being manufactured in China. Given the complex engineering involved in making foldable phones, Google appears to prefer that the device be manufactured in factories located in areas with an established supply chain, which currently includes China. The benefits of selecting such locations are numerous. Aside from lowering logistics costs, such a move allows businesses to easily source and replace faulty parts.
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While companies such as Google and Apple have been hesitant to offload production of some of their more advanced models to manufacturing plants in countries such as India and Vietnam, this is changing. Apple is expected to begin producing its upcoming iPhone 14 models in Indian factories. While the Pixel Fold is most likely to be manufactured in China, Google is expected to shift production of a portion of its upcoming Pixel 7 series devices to Vietnam.
While China remains an appealing manufacturing hub for these brands, recent supply chain disruptions and rising Sino-Western tensions appear to have made them wary of putting most of their eggs in the Chinese basket.