Earlier this month the U.S. Patent & Trademark Office published a patent application from Samsung that builds on their long standing project of a foldable smartphone that could fold like a booklet. Samsung has a long history of working on this invention and in-part you could review many of Samsung's flexible display device archives here. Samsung's latest patent application shows a new hinge system that will support bending a single large display in half when the smartphone is closed or folded over as noted in our cover graphic. The key new features that stand out in Samsung's latest iteration of their foldable smartphone design include the integration of hologram and projector components.
Samsung's patent FIGS. 8 and 3 noted below illustrates two specific styles of device or smartphones using the new flexible display. The folded smartphone shown in patent FIG. 3 is supported by another Samsung patent application that we covered back on November 27th that related to a tab styled smartphone. The design found in FIG. 3 shows there's a hangover to support a tab system that's not found in patent FIG. 8 when closed. Today's Galaxy S6 Edge supports interactive icons along an edge of the display. Samsung is thinking of extending that feature to this next-gen foldable smartphone or smart book.
Although not illustrated in the graphics above, Samsung's patents do point to new features associated with this new smartphone. The most interesting features include a projector and hologram unit. Samsung notes that "The hologram may show a stereoscopic image (3D image) in the air using interference of light. The projector may project an image onto a screen, which may be located at the inside or outside of the electronic device. Samsung's patent FIG. 2 noted below presents us with an overview of the internal system which clearly shows us that the device will support both hologram and projector components. Unfortunately Samsung doesn't provide us with any clues as to how they plan to present these features to consumers in the future. No specialty app was described.
Samsung filed their US patent application back in June 2015. Considering that this is a patent application, the timing of such a product to market is unknown at this time.
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