It is no longer a secret that Apple is working on an iPhone with a foldable display in its labs — the company recently bought an exclusive license from Samsung for this technology. The latest Apple patent surfaced on the internet reveals new details about the folding device of the future.
As we can see in PatentlyApple, the company has registered a patent on a folding iPhone that focuses mainly on the classic problems of current folding smartphones and solving them.
The weak point in folding smartphones is the folding mechanism and the bendable part of the display. The display cannot fold completely but bends in an arc, and this area becomes unusable after months of use. Apple has proposed a partial solution to this problem — the patent describes a ‘self-healing’ mechanism for the display at the fold.
In the patent, Apple explains how to fix this issue — a part of the screen mounted on the axis of the curvature could be heated to facilitate the bending of the body. Thus, the folding screen would suffer less when closing and opening the device, resulting in less wear and tear and, therefore, greater durability by getting rid of so many imperfections.
For restoration, it is supposed to use an elastomer material, which will be able to gradually ‘heal’ all scratches, dents, and other damages in this area. The self-healing process can start automatically or with the help of external intervention — for example, from exposure to heat or electric current.
When Apple introduces the first foldable display smartphone or tablet is unknown. It is unlikely that this will happen next year, while the technology remains too expensive and requires improvement. Although patents never guarantee that the idea behind them will come true.