Over the past few days and months, Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL) has been severely criticized for not being aggressive enough with its innovations. The company that changed the attitude of the tech world may be getting technologically left behind, critics have pointed out. However, the iPhone maker may finally have come up with an answer that not only gets rid of those (unfair?) allegations, but also give its fans something very different to look forward to.
A new Apple patent describes a smartphone-like device that is quite different from those of today, as the screen cannot exactly be described as flat.
The patent application, which was filed in 2011, described a device similar to an iPhone, but instead of being rectangular and brick-like, the visual shows that the sides actually rounded so that the front simply curves around to the back and vice versa. The tops and bottoms still remain flat. (Take a look at the graphic from the patent application on the right.)
The reason for the rounded sides is that the device will sport a flexible AMOLED display, which can be folded up, inserted into the chassis, and then unfolded so that it wraps around from the front to the back and around to the front again. This design would give the device a seamless display.
Since our eyes can only see something from one direction at a time without awkwardly using a mirror, the display on the device would use facial recognition and tracking to determine on which side the display is needed. Also, a layering of the screens could be used to create a three-dimensional effect.
Considering the similarities between the device described in the patent and the current iPhone, it seems possible that this concept could potentially be the next model of the iPhone. With advanced screen technology and the potential to fit within Apple’s aesthetic values, this could be the shape of the iPhone 6…
As flexible displays have not yet been seen in mass-marketed smartphones yet, it could be a big step forward in the market for this screen technology. But, how Apple will likely implement the flexible screens doesn’t allow users to interact with that flexibility, which could reduce the novelty for potential buyers and leave competitors with a chance to differentiate their products in order to steal customers.
With the competition continually growing between Apple and phones run on Google’s (NASDAQ:GOOG) Android, it will be important for the iPhone maker to produce a device that can appeal to customers beyond the every day fans.
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