Published in El Pais, December 17th 2019.
Almost everyone knows the name Escobar as the infamous drug kingpin popularized cocaine in the United States and at one point was one of the richest men in the world until his pursuit of a political career in his native Columbia started the unraveling of his empire and eventually his death. Pablo of course is the more famous Escobar but his brother Roberto is now trying to make his way with the launch of his companies new phone, one he claims will take down both Apple and Samsung.
Named the Escobar fold, the smartphone is foldable like its counterpart Samsung Fold and comes in a 128GB and 512GB model. As mentioned in a previous article the benefit of a folding phone allows you to have a tablet like device that can fit in your pocket. The fact that a screen can bend is no easy feat which makes the most shocking thing about this phone is the price. The 128GB model can be yours for only $350, far less than the $2000 price tag that Samsung’s has and even less than most non folding high end smartphones like Apple’s.
One might have an ethical dilemma with buying a phone from the Escobar family, but this could have wider implications. Many other phone companies not from the big two would be dying to know how such a sophisticated phone was made on the cheap and would try to duplicate their success. Many who would think it would be years before owning such a phone might only have to wait a fraction of the time before putting their own foldable smartphone in their pocket.