Paper Phone Demo Could Hint at Future Smartphone Technology

Twenty years ago, I think most of figured we’d be living like the Jetsons by now. But flying cars are few and far between, and the closest thing we have to our own personal robot maid is the Roomba vacuum.

However, there is some neat stuff on the horizon, and this prototype by Roel Vertegaal is certainly proof of that. He is debuting his “Paper Phone” at the Association for Computing Machinery’s Computer Human Interaction conference next week. Folks planning to be in attendance should preset their faces to stunned…

According to ModMyi, the device is scheduled to be unveiled at the May 10th Vancouver event. Its creator, who also happens to be the director of Queen’s University Human Media Lab, says that the Paper phone is a “pocket-sized computer as thin and flexible as a sheet of paper is.”

You can interact with the device by bending it, flipping the corner to turn pages, or writing on it with a pen. While the technology seems cool, it’s still far from being ready to implement in consumer products. Currently there is only one prototype of the Paper phone device.

From the looks of the video it is running an older version of Android software, but I believe this could be used in several instances (interactive newspapers or maps anyone?). While I like that the device is so thin, I can’t see ‘bending’ as a fluid form of input. It’ll be interesting to see how this technology takes shape (no pun intended).

What do you think?