Bend it like Gumby: 5 ways a foldable phone could look like (Samsung patents)


We've been hearing it for a while now - Samsung is readying a smartphone with not just a flexible display, à la Galaxy S7 edge, but an actual foldable phone, which would require other elements of the phone to be bendable as well, starting with the chassis. How will Samsung achieve this remains still a mystery, but a treasure trove of patents it filed around possible variations gives a much needed hint.

Since 2012, the Korean conglomerate has filed for patents depicting a pull-out, rollable and bendable screens for flexible display gadgets. The pull-out stuff is rather interesting, as it essentially has to combine rollable and bendable portions as well, in the section where the sensor, power supply and control units are, in order for you to pick one side of the screen and stretch the whole gadget from a smartphone to a 7" tablet, for example. This one is probably pretty far off, though.

In fact, the most recent rumor about Samsung's elusive foldable handset states the welcome news that Samsung has gone with the most logical and desirable approach - a phone that can unfold into a small tablet-size screen, and then be bent back together to fit easily in your pocket. Is there a patent for that? You bet, here are the most noteworthy shapes and forms a potential foldable phone can take, according to Samsung itself, or, at least, its patent filings over the last few years, arranged chronologically. Cross fingers we get such a puppy early next year, as rumored.

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8 Comments

1. PhoneCritic

Posts: 1354; Member since: Oct 05, 2011

Really would love to see this in action. Samsung R&D do a heck of a job.

3. Bm888

Posts: 517; Member since: Jul 06, 2015

Great.. And I'd love to see implementation of a surface like mobile, tablet, laptop where edges can be attached to a keyboard and OS changeable to Windows in these forms :-P :-)

10. cheetah2k

Posts: 2223; Member since: Jan 16, 2011

I thought Apple held the patent for bendable phones? BWAHAHAHAHAHAHAHHAAHA!

6. FluffyBled unregistered

I don't see a future to the 2nd concept, others are awesome!

8. TechieXP1969

Posts: 14967; Member since: Sep 25, 2013

The Samsung edge phones starting with the Note Edge and now the S6 Edge/Edge+ and S7 Edge I think are a pre-cursor to what we can expect in the not to far distant future. A device that has 2 halves at 3-3.5" opening out flat to a 6"/7" device, with an S-Pen and some nice features to go with it would be epic. Especially if they can keep the device as narrow as the present Note. Also I wonder if the hinge will be designed so when you lay it flat, it locks into place so when you hold it, its like a typical smartphone or small tablet. These concepts if used could be a game-changer in how we ever thought of a phone or tablet device. The Microsoft Courier was a good idea, but maybe the tech back then would have made it too expensive to produce. Now that Samsung has a fold-able display, the Courier could be back in Microsoft's future. I think we all would love to see something new that hasn't been tried before and this could be it. Real innovation vs regurgitating the same phone 3 years later. lol.

9. amats69

Posts: 1527; Member since: Nov 12, 2012

This is really an awesome idea..what matters here, is the IMPLEMENTATION.

11. bugsbunny00

Posts: 2262; Member since: Jun 07, 2013

its been years now and still hearing this news from samsung and never happen.and how is the battery gonna be like?hope its not a 1000mah one.

12. DRS1977

Posts: 679; Member since: May 27, 2015

You think it is so easy to make a folding phone? It takes years and years to get something like this just right. Just be thankful that Samsung is even trying to make something like this. This could be a huge game changer.

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