Today's report covers several granted patents issued to Samsung by the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office this week worth noting. In total our report covers four granted patents with two of them being design patents and two of them being utility patents. Samsung specifically won design patents for both their Gear S2 watch and Radiant 360 R5 speaker that could end up being Samsung's future smart speaker design in 2018. On the utility patent side, Samsung was granted two patents covering future foldable smartphones applying two different methodologies.
Samsung Design Patent: Gear S2
Samsung Design Patent: Radiant 360 R5 Speaker
Samsung Wins Utility Patent for Foldable Devices
Samsung notes that in recent years, technology for a display device has been developed. For example, various display devices, e.g., a display device having a flexible display panel that is bent or rolled, a display device having a stretchable display panel having elasticity in at least one direction, etc., have been developed. Such display devices may be deformed into a predetermined shape or into various shapes according to a user's demand.
Among the display devices, the flexible display device may include a flexible display with a plastic substrate having flexibility and electrical elements disposed on the plastic substrate. The display device may further include a support frame formed to be bent, so the flexible display panel is disposed on the support frame. As such, the flexible display panel is folded by the support frame.
As you could see in patent FIG. 2 above that the folding of the display sounds like the display will be folded like a piece of paper whereas the actual design illustrates that within the frame of the smartphone actually creates a loop in the display at the fold mark so as to not damage the display with repeated folding.
Samsung Granted a Second Utility Patent for a Flexible Device and Folding Unit
Samsung was granted a second foldable smartphone patent last week that's a little different from the first foldable patent noted above. In their second patent win, Samsung shows us a very distinct folding unit that provides separating ribs to accommodate the display folding and unfolding in a more disciplined manner.
Foldable display devices will accommodate the mobile TV market better with a wider format as noted in FIG. 14 below. The design also provides a means of locking the longer display when folded so that it doesn't spring open in your pocked unexpectedly.
Unlike the flip top phones of old where there was a tiny screen in the upper part and a mechanical keyboard on the bottom, the next-gen foldable phones will provide one large foldable display to accommodate media content as well as apps and a virtual keyboard.
Samsung's FIG. 2 is a perspective view illustrating a flexible device in which an unfolded state is exemplified; FIG. 3 is a perspective view illustrating a flexible device in which an approximately 90 degree-folded state; FIG. 5 is a side view illustrating a flexible device partially in cross-section, in which an approximately 180 degree-folded state; FIG. 7 is a cross-sectional view illustrating a folding unit employed in a flexible device in which the folding unit is exemplified in an unfolded state; and FIG. 14 is a perspective view illustrating a curved flexible device in an open state for enjoying media such as television programming, a movie or YouTube content.
Patently Mobile covered a Samsung patent application back in 2016 which covered a lot of similarities to both of the granted patents issued to Samsung this week that you might to check out here. That report also presented a video showing the type of flexible display needed for this kind of end product.
Samsung has been working on foldable, scrollable and dual display smartphones for years and you could further research their work by visiting our Patently Mobile "Flex and Multiple Display" archives for Samsung here.
Patently Mobile presents only a brief summary of granted patents with associated graphics for journalistic news purposes as each Granted Patent is revealed by the U.S. Patent & Trademark Office. Readers are cautioned that the full text of any Granted Patent should be read in its entirety for full details. About Comments: Patently Mobile reserves the right to post, dismiss or edit comments.