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Samsung is first to the punch again, this time becoming the first smartphone maker to release a phone with a curved screen.

One of the worst kept secrets in tech was confirmed today when Samsung announced the Galaxy Round, the world's first smartphone with a curved OLED display.

Samsung said the curved design allows for some new features and uses - users can access features of the phone even when the screen is turned off by rolling the phone, for example.

The 'roll effect' means users can "check information such as date, time, missed call and battery easily when home screen is off", Samsung said.

But that's not all - the phone also utilises something called "the Gravity Effect" which creates a visual interaction with the screen when the device is tilted.

The Galaxy Round's 5.7-inch display has a slight horizontal curve, sort of like a smiley face, and weighs less than the Galaxy Note 3.

As for what's under the hood, the phone boasts a 5.7-inch, 1080p HD display, runs Android 4.3 (with Samsung's Touch Wiz interface) and comes with 3GB RAM, a quad-core 2.3 GHz processor, 13 megapixel camera, and S Pen functionality.

Rival phone maker LG is rumoured to be developing a similar curved display concept phone but it seems Samsung is first to market, as was the case with its Galaxy Gear smartwatch.

Curved displays are seen to potentially be the next big innovation in smartphones as sales start to lag worldwide in a saturated market, but it remains to be seen if a bended display is enough to force customers to reach for their wallets.

Check out the video below to see the Roll Effect in action.

The Galaxy Round will be releasing in the “Luxury Brown” color on October 10 in South Korea, for KRW1,089,000, or US$1,015. It's expected the phone will be released internationally eventually if it's successful in South Korea, along with more colour options.


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David Swan

David Swan is a tech journalist from Melbourne and is iTWire's Associate Editor. Having started off as a games reviewer at the age of 14, he now has a degree in Journalism from RMIT (with Honours) and owns basically every gadget under the sun. He also writes for Junkee and Fasterlouder. You can email him at david.swan@itwire.com or follow him at twitter.com/mrdavidswan