Apple has filed a patent application with the US Patent & Trade Office for a foldable iPhone that could be in the works. First spotted by Patently Apple, the patent describes a display that can be ‘opened and closed like a book’.
The design looks like two iPhones switched together, but the patent notes that the foldable iPhone will have a single sheet of a foldable display. The patent covers all types of displays, LCD, OLED, and microLED.
“An electronic device may have a flexible portion that allows the device to be folded. The device may have a flexible display. The flexible display may have a flexible display layer, a cover layer, a touch sensor interposed between the flexible display layer and the cover layer, a support layer, and a polarizer layer“, the patent explained.
This isn’t the first time we are hearing that Apple has plans to launch the iPhone with a bendable display in the near future. Last month, Korean news outlet The Bell had reported that Apple planned to invest in a LG plant for a production of a foldable display. The company has apparently invested heavily in LG Display’s upcoming production unit that will be completed in 2020. Evidently, Apple plans to launch the iPhone with a foldable OLED display in the market around 2021.
It’s being said that Apple isn’t using the Samsung Display to develop a foldable display, because the company could leak the custom technology to Samsung Electronics. The latter company is reportedly working on a flexible phone, currently known as the ‘Galaxy X’. Samsung could launch the device at the annual Consumer Electronics Show (CES) in Las Vegas next year.
Not just Apple and Samsung, even LG is working on a phone with a flexible display. The South Korean company filed a patent in 2015 for a phone with a bendable display. Microsoft is also said to be secretly developing a 2-in-1 device that can be worked as a phone and a tablet. The Chinese company Oppo too plans to launch a foldable phone with a rotating selfie camera.