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People paid actual money for 400,000 Samsung Galaxy Folds

Samsung managed to sell more than 400,000 Galaxy Folds last year, despite the handset’s sky-high price and lengthy list of serious shortcomings.

That’s according to DJ Koh, the head of Samsung’s mobile business, though he added that the actual figure may be significantly higher.

Related: The other folding phones that have launched

“I think we’ve sold 400,000 to 500,000 Galaxy Fold smartphones,” DJ Koh is reported to have told a group of journalists at CES in Las Vegas this week, South Korean publication Yonhap News Agency reports (via SamMobile).

In December, Samsung president Young Sohn claimed that the company had flogged one million units of the Fold, but Samsung quickly went back on this, blaming it on a mixup.

400,000-500,000 is clearly a big drop from one million, but it’s still a dishearteningly high figure, considering just how badly Samsung botched the launch of the folding device.

If you need reminding, it was on April 15 that the company started allowing technology reporters to get hands-on with the Samsung Galaxy Fold. By April 17, several high-profile reviewers had flagged up extremely worrying issues with the handset’s display − in some cases, the reviewer removed a crucial screen layer, mistakenly assuming it was a screen protector.

On April 22, Samsung officially announced that the folding phone’s release had been postponed, mere days before pre-orders were due to go live.

Samsung then tweaked the Galaxy Fold’s design to make it a bit less fragile and re-released it in September, though the box contains several sheets of warnings about how light a touch you need to employ in order to not break it.

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Remember, this is a device that costs £1800, and it’s also easy to forget that it was far from perfect even before the first reports of defects emerged, with the hinge gap, visible crease running down the screen, and comically small external display all attracting ridicule.

But I guess it takes more than that to put an early adopter off.

While it was great to see Samsung try its hand at something so ambitious, it’s hard to forgive the company for releasing a device that was so clearly not ready for market.

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