Chinese Company Develops Flexible Smartphone

August 1, 2016

Unlocking Word Meanings

Read the following words/expressions found in today’s article. 

1. prototype /ˈproʊ təˌtaɪp/ (n.) – the original model in which something is patterned after
Example: The prototype was further improved by adding extra features.

2. flexible /ˈflɛk sə bəl/ (adj.) – capable of being bent without breaking
Example: The cellphone case she bought is flexible.

3. processor /ˈprɒs ɛs ər / (n.) – the part of a machine that makes it run
Example: The computer’s processor cannot handle the program.

4. showcase /ˈʃoʊˌkeɪs/ (v.) – to display
Example: The new smartphone showcases modern design trends. 

5. futuristic /ˌfyu tʃəˈrɪs tɪk/ (adj.) – ahead of time
Example: The flying car he designed is futuristic.


Read the text below.
Chinese company, Moxi, has developed a prototype of a flexible smartphone.

The smartphone has a touchscreen feature and can be worn like a watch or a bracelet. It weighs only 200 grams and has a 5.2-inch flexible screen. The initial prototype will have only black and white displays since the company is still working on a full-color version for 2018.

The material used to develop the smartphone is graphene, the thinnest material in the world. Though thin, the material is 200 times stronger than steel. To make the screen flexible, the battery, processor, and other components are crammed into one end of the gadget. The company plans to sell it for about 5,000 yuan ($760).

Other smartphone manufacturers like Samsung and LG are also working on their flexible smartphones, which they are planning to release in 2017.

While Moxi’s flexible smartphone is certainly unique, it is not the first uncommon feature to be integrated in smartphone concepts. In 2009, Fujitsu showcased several futuristic phones, including the Chamelephone. The Chamelephone changes its appearance by taking the texture of the surface where it is placed, giving the impression that it is transparent.

Aside from flexibility and color, shape has also been utilized to create unique smartphones. Earlier this year, electronics company Monohm released the Runcible, a circular smartphone. Unlike other smartphones’ futuristic looks, the Runcible’s design was inspired by vintage pocket watches and has a wooden finish.

Viewpoint Discussion

Enjoy a discussion with your tutor.  

Discussion A

·         Would you buy a flexible phone? Why or why not?
·         Do you think a flexible smartphone would become popular in your country? Why?

Discussion B

·         In what ways can a flexible smartphone be useful?
·         Aside from flexibility, what features or characteristics would you like to see in smartphones?

August 1, 2016