Android is going to support foldable phones. Speaking today at the Android Developer Summit, VP of engineering Dave Burke said that Google is “enhancing Android to take advantage of this new form factor with as little work as necessary.”
He said that Google is adjusting its mobile operating system “to take advantage of this new form factor”. Developers can use a feature that allows apps to adapt to a new screen size.
The device includes two screens with one on the outside cover working as the traditional phone, while users can open up the device to reveal a larger display. Meanwhile, the second features one continuous screen on the exterior.
We just announced support for foldables at #AndroidDevSummit, a new form factor coming next year from Android partners.
Android apps run seamlessly as the device folds, achieving this form factor's chief feature: screen continuity. pic.twitter.com/NAfOmCOY26
— Android Developers (@AndroidDev) November 7, 2018
For example, you might start a video on the folded, smaller screen but later want a more immersive experience. You can simply unfold the device to get a larger tablet-sized screen. As you unfold, the app seamlessly transfers to the bigger screen without missing a beat.
Google points developers to an existing function called “screen continuity”. This technique is used by Android apps to adapt to a custom screen size. Several smartphone manufacturers are reportedly working on a folding smartphone, including Samsung, LG and Huawei. When folded, such a phone can be used as a small tablet.