Despite the amazing progress in display technology in recent years, one thing still remains beyond the mainstream consumer’s grasp: truly flexible screens. Last year Samsung and LG both released high end devices with bendable technology, however in the case of the Galaxy Round it was fixed to the glass, and in the case of the G Flex, could only be flattened. Neither device truly embodied “the vision”, and even the incredible new Galaxy Note Edge or Gear S can’t achieve it. Kyocera, no stranger to unique products however, thinks its latest prototype called the Proteus, might be just what the doctor ordered.
Displayed at Japan’s CEATEC exhibition a few weeks ago, the Proteus can transform into three distinctive shapes: a flat panel, a bracelet, and a drapery. The first is a typical smartphone presentation and isn’t particularly remarkable save for its extreme thinness. The bracelet configuration transforms the phone into a wearable, and by using sensors on the back of the display, allows the device to monitor the wearer’s health and fitness, making it ideal for workouts. The third form, “Clip Style”, would allow the user to wrap the panel over a thin rail; Display Factor suggests it might be ideal for cycling by placing it on a bicycle’s handle allowing the user to glance at information without needing to move their hands.
Unfortunately, Kyocera has yet to solve the problems about display technology (AMOLED is suggested however), how a keyboard would be used with the curved form factors, and of course, a battery to power the screen. Until solutions are found that will allow for a final product and subsequent mass production, the Proteus will alas remain a techies dream.