iPhone Idea for the Future Might Be a Throwback

Company gets patent for a flip phone
By Arden Dier,  Newser Staff
Posted Nov 26, 2016 10:35 AM CST
iPhone Idea for the Future Might Be a Throwback
The iPhone of the future?   (Patent Office)

(Newser) – No, you haven't gone back in time: Apple has been granted a patent for a flip phone. The patent, filed for in 2014 and published this week, envisions a phone with a foldable OLED touchscreen, reports Apple Insider. OLED screens, now used by the company only on the Apple Watch, would be a step up in technology from the current iPhone screens—thinner, tougher, brighter, and less of an energy suck. But the real trick is, of course, would be the phone's ability to bend in half: The patent describes a device that can fold multiple ways and even grip your clothes instead of having to go into a pocket, reports CNN. Sound interesting? Well, don't hold your breath.

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Such a phone isn't actually possible yet, notes the Guardian. No folding OLED screen is known to exist, and flexible screens are only just appearing at trade shows. The iPhone 8 is expected to be the first Apple phone to include an OLED screen—of the non-bending variety—though Samsung already employs OLED screens. (Bloomberg previously reported Samsung was considering a folding smartphone for release in 2017.) As for the Apple patent: "It may not hit stores any time soon, but the patent is a good indicator that Apple’s still trying to be the innovative company Steve Jobs built," says a post at Barron's. (Apple is trying to patent a paper bag.)

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