There’s no surprise in seeing Samsung filing a patent application for a flexible mobile display, and getting it approved, but with the CEO hinting that next year we may see a foldable device, makes it an attention getter. The application was actually filed last year, and just granted on 7 July.
A little twist to this information is that Samsung has filed for a foldable screen not only for the OLED variety, but also an LCD one, with a size roughly that of one of Galaxy’s tablets. The LCD circuit board is on the outside of each half, while on the OLED it is integrated into the package, and bends together with the panel.
Recently Samsung also received an approval which involves near-invisible buttons. These are active areas situated near the edge of a touchscreen, which can command the camera app, for instance. These so called “sensor-pads” can be mapped to different functions, such as a back button that is constantly under the tip of your thumb on the side of the phone. This wouldn’t take up any physical space below the screen, or a shutter button that doesn’t take away from the scene framing.
Now, according to another patent filing, Samsung appears to be interested in a foldable smartphone. While patents are no guarantee that they will turn into actual products, back in May was a report that Samsung was working on a device codenamed Project Valley that had a dual-screen foldable display, similar to what we’re seeing in this patent.
In any case, it you expected to see the release of a phone by years end, you’re going to be disappointed. Whether or not a foldable smartphone is something the market would want or need remains to be seen and odds are that will not happen until 2016.
Read Article (Tyler Lee | ubergizmo.com | 09/10/2015)
Some are thinking Samsung is being too innovative and just creating a patent stockpile for the future. Which is a very interesting view, but there is no doubt that functionality of these innovations will have a very steep learning curve.
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