Foldable phones seem inevitable at this point, with everyone from Samsung to Microsoft said to be working on flexible mobile devices.
And now, perhaps unsurprisingly, it looks like LG has some bendable ambitions of its own, as a new patent details a clamshell device with a display on the outside.
The patent, uncovered by GSMinfo, demonstrates a design where the screen is on the outside of the folding parts, so the phone can be used even when folded.
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In its folded position, the device is said to be the same size as a standard smartphone, while the unfolded position would see it transform into more of a tablet.
This follows the design of several recent patents from Samsung and Microsoft which detail handsets that can be folded into larger tablet devices.
LG’s own design is for a smartphone with a screen size of 5 inches, that would transform into a tablet with a display size of 7 inches.
According to GSMinfo, when the screen is folded, it will display several features, such as a power switch and fingerprint scanner, which will shift position when the device is opened out.
As with all these patents, there’s no guarantee we’ll ever see the design in the form of a consumer product, but with all the foldable phone patents emerging we’re sure one of these companies will launch something soon.
Samsung is reportedly considering launching around 100,000 foldable devices later this year, to gauge consumer response, though that hasn’t yet been confirmed.
Yesterday a patent from Microsoft surfaced, detailing a phone with two fold-out screens, that would allow it to transform into a tablet – a design that could well give us an idea of how the mysterious and unconfirmed Surface Phone will function.
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Let us know what you think of the LG patent in the comments.