Foldable Phone Market Faces Slowdown Amid Durability Concerns and High Costs

Navigating the Foldable Frontier: Challenges and Opportunities in an Evolving Market Landscape


As the allure of foldable phones continues to captivate consumers, the market experiences a notable deceleration, casting shadows of doubt on its growth trajectory. Dominated by Samsung in 2023, with expectations of a repeat performance in 2024, the foldable landscape grapples with durability fears and prohibitive price tags, signaling a potential shift in consumer preferences.

Market Insights:

  • Global shipments of foldable phones surged to 15.9 million units in 2023, capturing a modest 1.4% share of the smartphone market. However, growth momentum wanes, with projections for a mere 11% uptick to 17.7 million units in 2024.
  • TrendForce attributes this deceleration to durability apprehensions and exorbitant pricing, deterring prospective buyers from fully embracing foldable technology.

Durability Dilemma:

  • The reliability gap between foldable and slab-type handsets looms large, with concerns over fragility driving some consumers back to conventional form factors. Foldable devices grapple with a retention rate lower than their traditional counterparts.

Price Point Predicament:

  • Foldable phones remain ensconced in the realm of premium pricing, inhibiting mass adoption. However, hopes arise as standardized mass production of key components hints at a potential reduction in costs.

Samsung’s Strategy Shift:

  • Amidst market headwinds, Samsung endeavors to democratize foldable technology with the rumored launch of a more budget-friendly Galaxy Z Fold 6 variant in 2024. Aiming to maintain a global market share of approximately 60%, Samsung navigates the evolving landscape with strategic maneuvers.

Market Dynamics:

  • Huawei emerges as a formidable contender, poised to capitalize on its stronghold in the Chinese market, projected to command a 19.8% share in 2024, up from 11.9% in 2023.
  • Oppo and Vivo’s purported departure from the foldable arena underscores the sector’s volatile terrain, with the focus potentially shifting towards book-type devices over vertically folding flip-style phones.


  • While Samsung’s dominance persists, evolving consumer sentiments underscore the need for industry-wide innovation and affordability. As the foldable narrative unfolds, manufacturers navigate a delicate balance between technological advancement and consumer accessibility, shaping the trajectory of the market’s evolution.