Chinese smartphone manufacturers are doing pretty great in putting forth innovative and original ideas in technology. Huawei introduced the world’s first AI integrated chip while Vivo introduced an in-display fingerprint scanner and a motorized selfie camera. Oppo, however, took a leap further and made the whole upper section a motorized panel in its Find X Flagship. Now Oppo has also decided to jump on the foldable smartphone bandwagon like Huawei and Samsung.
Three new patents have emerged online denoting the various designs that Oppo might use for its foldable smartphone which may come at an unspecified point in time. The patents were filed with WIPO (World Intellectual Property Organisation) and despite emphasizing on the same phenomena, all designs have a different approach.
One of the designs details the use of three displays consolidating into one single screen. A hinge is used to keep the displays intact and while the screens are in a “closed” position, a magnet assists them in holding together. The first screen seems to be the thickest and holds the components such as camera while the third screen houses microphone and speaker. When folded, the device appears to have two screens, one on each side.
The other design reveals a large phone that can be folded like a book with the screen on the outside. Rotating mechanism is placed in the middle to open and close the phone. A similar design can be seen in the much-rumored Galaxy X foldable phone while Motorola has also patented a smartphone design that works on almost the same principle.
There is one more design that follows a more common approach and is somewhat nostalgic as it reminded me of the flip phones we once had in use before the advent of smartphones. In this design, the phone is folded vertically and, to prevent the screens from the damage, the company has induced airbags between the screens when folded.
As the race for innovation continues between the smartphone makers, we think foldable smartphones are a far cry from the presently prevailing bezel-less craze which means you might have to wait a year or two or maybe more, to get your hands on an actual working foldable smartphone.