Patents, while never definitive, often provide a decent barometer of where a company may headed with upcoming products. It's pretty safe to assume that despite its Note 7 woes, Samsung much-loved phablet line and its iconic S Pen will be sticking around, so to speak, for a while yet. A new patent filing suggests the stylus could be in line for a tidy upgrade in the near future with its very own speaker.
If you've ever held a Samsung S Pen, you'll know that it's quite a thin, albeit sturdy accessory. The so-called 'Galaxy Note Pen' would include a speaker that could essentially replace the speaker grille nearby the pen slot. When the pen docked within the Note, sound would travel through the pen and exit via the speaker at the top. When the pen is in use, sound would simply travel through the gap left by the pen's absence. Or, as clinically noted in the patent filing:
It's not established whether the Note Pen could or would provide any additional functionality courtesy of its new-found speaker when in use, but it's nonetheless an interesting concept. Where the S Pen is ubiquitous across Samsung's product line, this product seems specific to the Galaxy Note.
The patent was filed back in March of this year and could feasibly be utilized with the Galaxy Note 8. With the Note 7 still amid a recall, however, the very notion of its eventual successor seems light years away.