Cover (Image: Motorola)

As we await more groundbreaking announcements at the Mobile World Congress in February, here are the upcoming phones in 2020 with the most fanfare and what we know about them so far

1. Samsung Galaxy Bloom

After launching the first-ever foldable smartphone just last year, Samsung already has another foldable phone in the works. Hinting at a phone that folds vertically—like the clamshell phones of the '90s—this could be Samsung’s answer to competitor Motorola’s Razr.

The phone, called Galaxy Bloom, is rumoured to cost below SGD1,000 (about RM3,000) and also support 8K video recording. Samsung is expected to officially announce the phone at Samsung Galaxy Unpacked in February.

2. Samsung Galaxy S20 series

Despite initial speculation that Samsung would be releasing a Galaxy S11 to its flagship lines, rumours have emerged that it will be named Galaxy S20 instead, signalling the start of the new decade. Like last year’s Galaxy S10 line, there will likely be three phones varying in sizes and specifications.

As for the cameras, it could either have a 12-megapixel or a 108-megapixel main camera, with the higher end models fitted with time-of-flight sensors. All will be unveiled at Samsung’s event next month.

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3. Microsoft Surface Duo

Not only is Microsoft back in the phone game again, but the tech giant is also hopping on the foldable phone bandwagon with its upcoming dual-screen phone. But what surprised everyone the most is the fact that the Surface Duo will be running on Android, instead of Microsoft’s own software.

While Microsoft says it isn’t a phone, the Surface Duo offers all the capabilities of a smartphone, with a 360-degree hinge that can fold inwards or out. Unfold it into a single 8.3-inch screen or split it into two 5.6-inch displays, which you can use for multi-tasking. It is expected to drop in “holiday 2020” so that’s plenty of time before we can find out more about Microsoft’s new venture.

4. iPhone 12 series

The iPhone 11 may have just been introduced in September last year, but fans are already sitting tight for Apple’s next release. While the iPhone 12 will reportedly look mostly similar to the iPhone 11 besides a possible removal of the notch, leaks and rumours point to a huge upgrade internally, which would justify the anticipation for its debut. For one, this would be Apple’s first lineup of phones that supports 5G.

The iPhone 12 is also expected to introduce 120Hz ProMotion displays, already seen in iPad Pros. As for the camera, the new lineup could integrate a long-range laser-based 3D camera, which would largely improve the performance of Apple’s Face ID, Portrait photography mode, and also open possibilities for augmented reality. The return of Touch ID, hidden within the display, could also be likely to improve biometric security. We’ll have to wait till September for this one.

5. Motorola Razr

Remember your very first Razr flip phone in the early 2000s? It’s making a comeback, reimagined for 2020. Originally planned for a December 2019 release, it seems that the new Razr has been delayed and will be debuting this year instead. Boasting a 6.2-inch foldable screen, the phone folds vertically into a sleek and portable 2.7-inch display.

The phone features a 5-megapixel front-facing camera and a 16-megapixel main camera which is perfect for taking selfies when closed. As a nod to its predecessor, there’s a plastic “chin” at the bottom of the phone, which also acts as an optical fingerprint reader.

6. Huawei Mate X

When Samsung first announced the Galaxy Fold in 2019, Huawei was quick to follow up with its very own foldable smartphone—the Mate X. Originally slated to release in 2019 as well, the launch was eventually delayed and it was only made available in China in November last year. Word has it that the Mate X will be released in the first quarter of 2020.

One of the sleekest foldable phones announced, the Mate X appears as an impressively thin smartphone with touchscreen displays covering either side. When opened, the smartphone transforms into an 8-inch tablet. The high-performance 5G phone will also feature a re-designed Leica Camera System for one of the best picture qualities.

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This story originally appeared in Singapore Tatler.

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