Collapsible screens: No big deal for online marketers or potential game changer?

Recently, Search engines announced that the Android OS will natively assistance foldable screens on smartphones. Along with Samsung’ s promise of a Galaxy foldable smartphone, it seems that this form factor — promised simply by consumer tech companies since the finish of the last century — might soon emerge.

What sort of opportunities — and challenges– might this technology represent for advertising?

A big deal. Foldables could potentially come in a number of form factors, ranging from a single display screen that covers either the two outdoors or the two inside surfaces of the flip phone, to a small display screen that fits into a pocket plus unfolds like a map into a bigger display. Eventually, almost any kind of malleable screen may be possible.

While some observers speculate that really thin and flexible screens — as bendable as paper — are years off, the fact is that will marketers don’ t yet understand how fast the technology will take keep or evolve.

In fact, several experts that I contacted state a foldable screen– in its numerous possible incarnations — is a big-deal.

‘ An entire reimagining. ’ Cellular device buyers “ are desperate to see something dramatically different, ” customer experience platform Sitecore CTO Ryan Donovan told me via e-mail. Foldable screens, he said, “ open the door to a complete reimagining” of how information is sent plus consumed, “ more radical” that this smartwatch.

That means, naturally , that marketers and their info, interaction and visual designers possess a lot of new choices to make.

For instance, Donovan said, online marketers will need to decide if there is a different group of content and a different kind of responsiveness every time a screen is folded open up or close.

Need to it be the same image writ larger when the screen is unfolded, or should it become 2 images? The device will likely know about a good “ unfolding” action, so ought to that trigger some difference within content or interactivity?

Potentially, the unfolding could switch a phone into the equivalent of the tablet. How does that transformation in one device type to another change the content material and the interactivity?

Completing complex actions. One approach for marketers to cope with a multi-device universe has been to produce content that is independent from the display layer and from the screen size, therefore the same material can be rendered for any mobile device, a tablet or even a refrigerator screen. Some marketers may choose that route, and the collapsible screen — with all its mixtures — could become just another group of destinations.

But the foldable screen also offers several exclusive attributes, including folding and unfolding actions, and the ability for one gadget to become a much larger or smaller 1.

Derek David, an internet developer for Sozoe Creative, e-mailed me that customers on collapsible mobile screens will “ have the ability to more easily complete complex actions such as purchases or feedback forms on the larger form factor. ” This could imply that the lower rate of sale sales on smaller mobile screens, in comparison to desktops, could become a thing from the past.

Purpose indicators. Sal Visca, CTO of e-commerce platform Flexible Path, pointed out that “ the fact associated with unfolding [a screen] certainly strong indication of the user’ h level of interest and engagement using the content, ” meaning that unfolding or even folding could become key occasions for interactivity and analysis, perhaps on the level of a click. Unfolding certainly means the users want to learning much more content or in a larger file format, but Visca notes that it may also mean the user is ready to fill out types, make a purchase or otherwise engage with the content.

He also predicted that will content flow charts will need to be expanded, so they can accommodate the progression associated with additional or higher resolution content each time a screen is unfolded or the shape otherwise changed. And unfolding the screen may represent several real-world analogous action, like starting a wallet.

Convex, concave shapes. Changeable screens may also offer sweeping new form factors for marketing experts. Litha Ramirez, Director of Encounter Strategy and Design Group in digital transformation agency SPR, informed me “ bendability introduces new shapes” that can incorporate a level of depth, for example convex or concave shapes, or perhaps a cylinder. Foldable screens are “ on the way to bendable screens, ” she said, an evolution that may even lead to screens molded to some specific shape, like a character’ ersus face.

A twisting action on the screen could also “ flip pages in a [virtual] book, ” she imagined, possibly combined with haptic feedback therefore users “ feel” the web page turns or other on-screen action. A cylindrical screen might permit a marketer to turn a display straight into, say, a Coke can.

The potential impact, Ramirez mentioned, is “ huge, ” considering that bendable/foldable screens could make any surface area into any kind of changeable shape.

Hoping it’ h not the Segway. In fact , if even a portion of the above mentioned predictions come true, malleable screens can turn the entire category of mobile directly into something different.

Currently, cellular marketing to pocket devices should account for their transportability, wirelessness plus their small screen size.

If the latter factor is taken out, then the category changes. In addition to perhaps leading to more sales, such products could be used more frequently for efficiency tasks like word processing or even sales presentations.

However Ramirez said, let’ s wish that malleable screens “ don’ t go the way of the particular Segway . ”

As ingenious as that single-person motorized scooter is, she mentioned, its biggest issue has been that it can be a solution without a clear problem, as well as the benefit hasn’ t been sufficient for most people to warrant the adopting and the cost.

Whilst bendable/foldable screens represent terrific possibilities for marketers, the pending query is: Are the benefits worth sufficient — for most people — to justify the adoption, learning curve plus cost?

This particular story first appeared on MarTech These days. For more on marketing technology, click here.


About The Author

Barry Levine covers marketing technologies for Third Door Media. Earlier, he covered this space like a Senior Writer for VentureBeat, and has written about these and other technology subjects for such publications since CMSWire and NewsFactor. He launched and led the web site/unit in PBS station Thirteen/WNET; worked being an online Senior Producer/writer for Viacom; created a successful interactive game, ENJOY IT BY EAR: The First COMPACT DISC Game; founded and led a completely independent film showcase, CENTER SCREEN, dependent at Harvard and M. I actually. T.; and served over 5 years as a consultant to the Meters. I. T. Media Lab. You could find him at LinkedIn, and on Tweets at xBarryLevine.

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