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Author Topic: Apple Considered Building a Foldable iPhone  (Read 346 times)

Offline legendguru (OP)

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Apple Considered Building a Foldable iPhone
« on: November 23, 2016, 12:32:47 AM »
Apple is expected to roll out a major overhaul of the iPhone next year, but the company is expected to retain the existing form factor and go for moderate design changes that wouldn’t make the device entirely different from its predecessors.
But a recent patent called “Flexible display devices” shows that Apple at least considered building a foldable iPhone, using an approach that reminds of the traditional clamshell design that old phones were based on.

As you can see in the drawing here, the foldable iPhone would use several flexible parts, including a display that would allow the device to close shut, just like a typical clamshell phone. The patent claims that such a technology would use hinges made of metal, and Apple explains that they could be built from nickel and titanium, making them not only elastic but also very durable.

The top part of the phone would be used for incorporating features such as the camera, speakers, light sensors, and display controllers, and the device could rely on flexible circuit boards to connect the two parts. The lower section of the iPhone would house other components, such as the CPU and the processors, as well as microphones.

The hinge can hold the display in any position
Apple explains that in order to avoid stretching the display, it can be tensioned with tensioning structures, while the hinge could employ rotational detents to hold the screen in certain positions, according to users’ preferences.

“The hinge may be configured to allow the flexible display to be placed in a front-to-front configuration in which an active side of the display faces itself or a back-to-back configuration. Engagement structures may be used to help the housing grip external objects and to hold the housing portions together. The hinges may be provided with rotational detents to help hold the flexible display in desired positions,” the patent reads.

The patent undoubtedly sounds appealing for iPhone fans, but this is by no means a confirmation that Apple wants to build such a device. On the bright side, Cupertino seems to be already looking into ways to significantly overhaul the iPhone, so the next few years are likely to bring major changes in terms of design and form factor.



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