Imagine viewing a video on a tablet, and then flipping it over to read an eBook
. Such a dual-screen tablet could be eventually produced as on-line retailer Amazon has just been awarded a patent for a tablet with both a traditional LCD screen on front and a static e-ink display on back. The tablet would use its rear and front-facing camera to determine which side is currently being viewed by the tablet's user.
"A device might alternatively utilize at least one camera to determine which side of the device is facing the user, and might activate the display on that side of the device to convey content. A device might display notifications on an edge of the device, such that a current orientation of the device might be less important."-Amazon patent filing
Aha! I know what you're thinking. If one screen can be a large consumer of battery power, two screens would require you to hook the tablet up to your car battery for any decent battery life. But the filing says that having two such displays on one tablet would actually improve battery life
by switching from the LCD screen to the e-ink display whenever slow to non-moving content is displayed.
With Amazon's big press event scheduled for next Thursday in L.A. to introduce the sequel to the sold out Amazon Kindle Fire
, we wouldn't expect to see the dual-screen tablet just yet. But we have to be impressed with the way that Amazon continues to be an innovator in the industry.
"An electronic device including two or more display elements can provide enhanced functionality with improved rates of power consumption. A user can cause information that does not change rapidly to be provided or moved to a relatively static display element, such as an electronic ink display, which enables that information to be displayed for a period of time with little additional power consumption"-Amazon patent filing
Amazon has patented a dual-screen tablet with one LCD panel on the front and a static e-ink display on back