A slidable phone which also folds? That's what Samsung's latest patent envisions1
The Samsung Galaxy S9
In the hope of avoiding notched displays, a number of Chinese manufacturers have turned towards slidable formats which allow front-facing cameras to be hidden behind the display. Alongside this, some companies are hard at work on foldable devices. But from the look of a new patent, Samsung could soon combine these two formats.
From the front, the device in question looks just like a traditional smartphone – it even sports Samsung’s trademark physical home button from years ago – while, over on the rear, it isn’t that different either. But when the metal frame is inspected, the differences are clear. Just like the Xiaomi Mi Mix 3, the whole rear portion of the smartphone can be slid up slightly to reveal a front-facing camera. Rather surprisingly, though, Samsung’s patent also envisions a small secondary display that could be used to show relevant information such as the time, date, and any notifications.
Also visible along the metal frame is a hinge. This allows the device to be folded over like a traditional flip phone. And, while the outer portion of the device doesn’t contain a display, the small secondary panel that’s present is visible at all times, allowing users to see notifications and other info at all times.
Because this is a patent there’s no guarantee a device like this one will ever make it to the market. But with foldable devices still a relatively new concept, experiments such as this one to test the market’s reaction certainly wouldn’t be surprising.