Apple has patented a flexible wraparound display for a future iPhone model or other devices.
The European Apple patent details flexible wraparound display technology made from sapphire and transparent displays.
According to the patent, Apple’s sapphire and transparent display would be made using an alumina powder liquidmetal process and could be used in smartphones as well as devices like smartwatches.
The patent outlines electronic devices with a hollow display cover structure that may come in the shape of a hollow cylinder or tube with an oval, rectangular or triangular cross shape.
To form the hollow display cover structure Apple would use a material like sapphire, which the company already uses in its iPhone 5S Touch ID sensor and for the rear camera covering.
The flexible wraparound display device would still feature a touchscreen, accelerometer, gyroscope and other sensors for user input.
It could use some of those sensors to gather information on the rotating motion of the device, including tilts and other actions.
These motions would adjust the content display on the “flexible display layer”. The product may well display content that moves or remains fixed according to the movements, or change pages of content when tilted.
You could also scroll up and down and control other on-screen motions by physical movements.
This could be particularly useful for the Apple Watch, if you control content with wrist movements and various motions.
Apple’s patent also states that a game or other software could be displayed on the device that controls a ball or other moveable object. Apple could well bring simple maze-like games to the device with the flexible wraparound screen.
The patent also says this rotating technology can also be used for map, music, document and other apps, with all of them updated in real time as the display rotates. This could allow you to read a long document or book without the need to turn the pages.
As the device is made with a wraparound screen, you can also scroll face side content using the back of the screen with a scrolling gesture. This would work with all content, and function in a similar way to the rear touchpad of the PS Vita.
Apple finishes the patent by stating the technology could be applied to iMacs, iPads and MacBooks as well as handheld options like the iPhone, iPod or other “portable electronic devices”.
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