We all know that Samsung is planning to launch a folding smartphone − believed to be called the Galaxy F − next year, but a newly discovered patent suggests it’s also working on a device that can be folded not once, but twice.
While the Galaxy F is expected to fold like a book, the patent, which was granted by the United States Patent and Trademark Office this week (via Mobielkopen and GSMArena) shows off what essentially looks like a sort of electronic folded leaflet.
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It appears to be a tablet that folds in two places − dual-folding, if you like − with the two hinges running parallel to each other and splitting the screen into three similar-sized sections. The images below do a much better job of explaining what we mean:
Unfolded, it looks like a pretty standard tablet, and completely folded, it looks like a chunky phablet. The screen panel that holds the primary camera appears to be one of the outer panels, meaning the camera sensor should always face the right way.
You can also use the device with one of its three panels folded, transforming it into a slightly smaller tablet.
Once folding smartphones, such as the recently revealed Royole FlexPai, arrived, it always seemed inevitable that handsets you’d be able to fold more than once would follow soon after.
One of the biggest question marks hanging over such a design, however, is thickness.
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Royole hasn’t revealed how thick the FlexPai − which only folds once − is when it’s folded, but since it’s 7.6mm thick while unfolded, and doesn’t quite fold flush, we can safely assume it’s slightly chunkier than 15.2mm.
Simply put, good luck trying to squeeze the device shown off in this particular patent into a skinny jeans pocket.
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