Apple granted new patent for folding display that could be used on a future iPhone

Apple granted new patent for folding display that could be used on a future iPhone
Apple has been rumored to be seriously considering a folding iPhone/iPad device. Today, the company was granted a patent by the USPTO that is titled "Electronic devices with flexible displays." Originally filed on June 8, 2016, the patent mentions a transparent display that bends in the middle using "grooves or other recesses." When the screen is folded, there is an area of the screen that gets thinned on the display layer.

To prevent this thinning, which can cause havoc with the display, the patent discusses the use of filling the recess area in the middle with "Elastomeric material, fluids and other materials." The patent, US10,020,462, is credited to Jiang Ai, Erik A. and Soyoung Kim.

Back in March, Merrill Lynch analyst Wamsi Mohan said that Apple is working to produce a folding iPhone for 2020.  You might recall that back in October 2017, there was talk out of Korea that Apple has given LG the job of producing a foldable OLED panel and circuit board with the goal of releasing a foldable iPhone in, yup, 2020. You have to love it when two separate rumors months apart have the same timeline.

The rumored folding iPhone will turn from a handset into a tablet-like device. Check out images from the patent at the top of this article, and in the slideshow below.


source: USPTO

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13 Comments

1. Phullofphil

Posts: 1762; Member since: Feb 10, 2009

Don’t rush the foldable pjone thing. It can be good but there needs to be a good use of it

2. Phullofphil

Posts: 1762; Member since: Feb 10, 2009

I don’t think any company should rush this. I am speaking to all manufactures. They were so gung ho about making flexible screens without having a good use for it well except for Apple and certain companies that wanted to make their displays a little tougher.

4. RebelwithoutaClue unregistered

There is a difference in rushing an end product and rushing tech itself. There is nothing wrong with pushing the boundaries of tech. This way we get progress, just make sure people are ready for the tech they invent.

5. Phullofphil

Posts: 1762; Member since: Feb 10, 2009

There is pushing boundaries but you don’t throw trch into a Dailey used device meant to be reliable. That’s how you get gimmicky crap that ruins good ideas. Not a beta testable idea on a phone that is going to cost that much. Like in automobiles you push boundaries on design with solid hardware not beta hardware

9. cmdacos

Posts: 4110; Member since: Nov 01, 2016

What's Apple's good use for foldable screens? Haven't seen them communicate anything yet...

3. Atrixboyyy

Posts: 595; Member since: Nov 03, 2011

Isn't that's already patented? How is it not, everyone has been aiming for it.

6. Phullofphil

Posts: 1762; Member since: Feb 10, 2009

More than one way to implement the foldable phone. Sounds like the hard part is screen wearing out at fold

7. Vokilam

Posts: 1181; Member since: Mar 15, 2018

I think that’s the key - make the screen surface durable enough to withstand constant bending.

8. ikenvape

Posts: 308; Member since: May 28, 2014

Lol headline should read: Apple patents foldable display and waits for makers to finish their products.

10. worldpeace

Posts: 3129; Member since: Apr 15, 2016

Yeah, it's just another ambiguous doodle patent from apple, just for excuse to sue other.

11. worldpeace

Posts: 3129; Member since: Apr 15, 2016

And soon, Apple will teach Samsung and LG about how to make foldable OLED display. /s

13. RoboticEngi

Posts: 1251; Member since: Dec 03, 2014

I can't wait for apple to "make/copy" this feature.........

* Some comments have been hidden, because they don't meet the discussions rules.

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