Apple has just been awarded a patent for a foldable phone that was originally submitted to the US Patent and Trademark office September 22, 2016.
This comes on the heels of related news about a foldable iPhone Apple was developing with the assistance of LG just a few weeks ago.
Little known fact, Apple is already using flexible display panels on the new iPhone X.
The bottom of the screen houses the display controller that can often pose issues for truly edge-to-edge designs. Think of the Motorola 360 smartwatch that has a “flat tire” look because of the controller on the bottom of the display.
The flexible display allows Apple to wrap the display backwards behind itself as seen in the image above.
As far as future phones go, based on the patent images, the iPhone could feature an edge-to-edge display and bend along a center line that splits the device into two screen halves.
It paints the picture of many different use cases. Folding it with both the screens facing out so you have screens on both sides of your device. Fold with the screens in to offer protection. It could even be used open, almost like the size of an iPad mini, possibly with additional attachments to make it more akin to a laptop.
The patent also shed some light on the display type that Apple hopes to use on such a screen. Micro-LEDs could be the technology of choice, which is very interesting as we’ve seen a lot of persistent rumors lately about Apple’s investments into micro-LED technology.
Foldable phones have been becoming more and more feasible, with one already hitting the market. The first foldable phone is the ZTE Axon M, however it doesn’t exactly look like the most svelt device.
Samsung has also confirmed the upcoming Galaxy X which will be a foldable phone. While the phone has been more or less confirmed, we haven’t gotten to see what it looks like quite yet.
As usual, this is all rumors and speculation so it is a shot in the dark on whether we will, or won’t ever see a foldable iPhone in the next few years.
What do you guys make of all this? Does this sound like something you want, or are you perfectly happy with designs like the iPhone X. Sound off below.