Samsung DexSource: Android Central

What you need to know

  • Samsung and LG are reportedly working together on a proof-of-concept external screen for phones.
  • Dubbed Dexbook by Samsung, the product will not have a keyboard attached to it.
  • Samsung's model will have a 10,000mAh battery, while LG's variant will have a 5,000mAh cell.

Samsung and LG are brewing an interesting, and perhaps ultimately irrelevant, product, according to ETNews. According to the Korean publication, the duo is working on creating a proof-of-concept external, portable display for smartphones. Think something like the Asus ZenScreen GO, but for your new Galaxy S20, instead of your Galaxy Chromebook.

The idea here is, of course, to use the external display — both companies' models feature a 14.1-inch panel — to boost productivity for those tasks where a smartphone screen is a little too small. It's an interesting idea and would certainly work well with Samsung's Dex technology.

There's just one problem, however: neither prototype comes with a keyboard. It's hard to imagine scenarios, except perhaps watching movies on the go, in which you'd want a more desktop-like experience on a larger screen without also wanting a full-sized keyboard.

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Both companies are obviously trying to sell a portable, there-when-you-need-it-gone-when-you-don't tablet experience without the need to buy a tablet. (Remember Asus' Transformer series?) However, with ETNews reporting that both displays will cost anywhere from 400,000 ($339) to 500,000 ($423) won, customers could just buy a proper tablet instead.

It's a proof-of-concept, of course, so maybe Samsung and LG are merely experimenting to see what'll stick. On the other hand, they might be banking on these displays' improved portability compared to a proper tablet. Without the need for the full 'brains' of a tablet, they will certainly be much lighter than a comparable tablet.

They'll also feature built-in batteries, with Samsung's Dexbook boasting a 10,000mAh cell, while LG's model will have a more modest 5,000mAh power pack. Presumably, these batteries can also charge the phone, acting as both an external display and a power bank.

ETNews reports that both firms plan to start production in Q2 2020, with the products coming to market in the third quarter — barring significant delays due to the coronavirus outbreak, of course.

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