Apple filed a new patent application on Thursday, August 2 with the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office for an iPad Smart Cover that would also function as a secondary touchscreen display for the device.
An Apple Insider report published Thursday, stated that the filing entitled, "Cover Attachment With Flexible Display," shows an iPad smart cover that features a MagSafe-like magnetic connection to the iPad, sharing data that would be shown on display.
It is said that the secondary touchscreen will display simple status messages or even act as a full-fledged touch keyboard. The doubling up of touchscreen as a keyboard for the tablet is reportedly similar to Microsoft Surface tablet's "Touch Cover."
In the patent application abstract, Apple stated: "A tablet device with a flexible cover is disclosed. Thin flexible display technology can be integrated into the cover without affecting the overall form factor of the cover or tablet device. Adding the integrated display to the flexible cover greatly enhances the overall functionality of the tablet device."
The patent application features several statements on how a touch-based smartcover display can add new functionality to the iPad, including an additional row of icons on the homescreen as well as movie playback controls at the rear of the device.
In making the device versatile, the iPad maker can enable a user to make the smart cover as a secondary display and also write on it using the stylus, the AMOG reported.
Apart from enhancing the tablet experience closer to a laptop computer, the new features also offer a glimpse into the fancy ideas of Apple's future products, though they always do not lead to a new product, analysts noted.