It's only been a couple of years since foldable phones hit the market, but the hardware designs already seem to be lacking innovation, with form factors split between the clamshell of the Moto Razr, and Galaxy Z Flip, or the folding tablet of the Samsung Galaxy Z Fold 2, and Huawei Mate Xs, but the Compal CHEESE is shaking things up with the perfect foldable smartphone for camera lovers.
The device takes the shape of a tall candy bar phone, and features just one camera array, but the novelty of the CHEESE is that the the top third of the handset folds over, allowing the lenses to be used for selfies, or to capture images of whatever is front of you.
What's more, once folded, your subject can get a preview of what their photo will look like thanks to the portion of the screen facing them, while you can use the larger segment of the display that's facing you as a viewfinder. The folded edge creates a third, useable area that can include functionality like 'tap to shoot' or 'slide to zoom' as well displaying notifications.
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Compal is the Taiwanese company behind the concept spotted by Liliputing (opens in new tab) on the IF World Design Guide website (opens in new tab), and our favorite feature of the design is that it embraces camera lovers with the aesthetic as well as the practical applications of snapping shots; when folded, the CHEESE looks remarkably like a digital camera. It's not that bulky and it's even more compact when folded.
For now, the Compal CHEESE is just a concept – albeit a very cool one. While Samsung's foldable sales have accounted for a huge portion of the market, there's not a lot of competition around, and the phones that are challenging the company for the crown are echoing the same designs we've seen trotted out in the sector for a while now. We'd love the CHEESE to come to fruition and add some much-needed funky flavor to foldable smartphones, but it's not about to hit retailer shelves any time soon.