Apple Patent Reveals 3D, Curved iPhoneDale Wright
Apple has filed a very interesting new patent that could reveal the future of the iPhone.
Unlike some of its other patents, this one is a complete change in the way the iPhone’s hardware looks and behaves.
The diagram in the patent application shows two AMOLED screens, each curved around to form an oval shaped device. But instead of having one screen pointing forwards and one pointing backwards, the patented iPhone appears to show both screens facing upwards. This would allow the user to see both screens at the same time, making the display appear to operate in 3D.
The prototype also has soft, rounded sides and a complete lack of physical buttons; even the volume control has been removed and turned into a touchscreen icon. That means that all of the phone’s functionality would be controlled solely by touch.
From the wording of the patent application, it looks as though the displays would be flexible and encased in a plastic housing. In the core of the housing, there would be a logic board and processor. The patent says that the phone could potentially detect which side of the device the user was looking at.
It seems that Apple’s designers want to experiment with new ways to use the surface of the iPhone, rather than simply coating it with plastic or glass. That means that iPhones could eventually evolve to have touchscreens on both sides.
Apple files lots of patents, and many of them are just ideas – they never become real features or devices. However, the fact that it is considering changing the shape of its iPhone is an exciting sign that we could see a big redesign in the next couple of years.
The new iPhone design isn’t the only patent Apple has filed recently. There’s also a brand new software patent that describes a new feature to show the user information while they are on hold. The options the user is given would vary depending on the number they had called; that could range from weather reports to information about the company they were waiting to speak to.