Apple has not abandoned the idea of creating an iPhone with a folding screen and can release the device in the future. The US Patent Office recently issued a patent license to the manufacturer, which describes possible methods for adding a flexible display to a mobile device.
According to the document, Apple engineers plan to use a special loop and several layers of flexible elastomeric material to preserve the display functions, but make the device foldable. The main part of the surface can be made of glass. When folded, the iPhone will resemble a normal smartphone, but the display will be taught to expand to make the device look like a tablet. Something similar was developed by Microsoft, but the project, code-named Andromeda, was frozen.
Apple applied for a patent in June 2016. Probably, at this time the company began to think about the possibility of releasing an iPhone with a large folding display.
This is not the first patent that describes a folding iPhone. Previously, insiders reported that LG is working on a prototype of a flexible OLED display for the iPhone. The possible release date for a model with an unusual screen was called 2020. Note that there is no official confirmation of plans for the release of the smartphone in the new form factor.
This year we will see three models of the iPhone. Two will receive OLED-displays with “bells”, and one – a more familiar design with the Home button and frames around the screen.