KEY POINTS

  • Apple could be working on a foldable iPhone or iPad if a new document is to go by
  • The patent published recently talks about a device that uses a thin display and foldable cover for a device
  • Over the years, Apple has been filing patents for a foldable display, which triggers speculations that it might be working on a foldable iPhone

Foldable smartphones are on their early phase in the industry with a few big names launching their take on the handset with a revolutionary form factor. Several consumers are wondering if the Cupertino tech giant Apple has any plans of launching its version of a foldable iPhone. It appears that a new proof about the company's stand on a foldable smartphone was recently spotted online.

New Foldable iPhone Document

The US Patent and Trademark Office published on Tuesday, the patent filed by Apple. It is titled "Foldable cover and display for an electronic device." The Apple document discusses the use of a flexible display to develop a foldable iPhone or iPad. It also mentions a cover that could allow the device to fold on designated locations.

How Does it Work?

As Apple Insider states, "the use of flexible cover sheets and a flexible display layer within the same device, coupled to each other. The two layers are configured to be able to move between two different configurations when folded and unfolded, with the cover layer bending at specific points dubbed a foldable region."

iPhone 11 Pro Unboxing iOS 13 allows users to consume less data than normal. Photo: Aaron Yoo

The patent also cites as an example "an electronic device comprises a display layer and a cover layer coupled to the display layer and defining a foldable region, wherein the display layer and the cover layer are configured to be moved between a folded configuration and an unfolded configuration by bending the cover layer along the foldable region. "

Other Foldable iPhone Patent

In Aug. 2018, Apple also filed a patent of the same title as the one published on Tuesday. The patent looks into several possibilities of folding the screen, which could be applied to a smartphone or a tablet. Additionally, Apple mentions that the concept could allow thin displays to be folded in various ways like folding in half like a book, or like a brochure.

Another patent filed by the Cupertino company reveals an all-glass design that could be used for its future iPhone models. It looks into the possibility of converting all the sides of the device into a display with one primary screen serving as the main display. It is worth noting that these patents are in no way solid pieces of evidence that Apple is going to release a foldable iPhone in the future. But, it is interesting to learn that the Cupertino company is actually looking into the possibility of developing one.