The foldable phone design by Motorola. Mobielkopen

  • The USPTO has published a Motorola Mobility patent for a foldable phone with a flexible screen.
  • The patent shows a device with a clamshell design, akin to the old-school Razr phone.
  • The device features a tall, flexible display that folds in half as well.


We’ve seen plenty of news regarding foldable phones in the past 12 months, as flexible displays look set to enable new form factors. But Motorola‘s patent for a foldable device seems like a modern take on the classic Razr design.

The patent, spotted by Mobielkopen, shows a rather tall phone (as seen above). But we also see a hinge, allowing the phone and screen to fold in half like clamshell handsets of yore.

It wouldn’t be the first time we see a clamshell form factor in the modern smartphone era, as Samsung has its W series of smartphones in China. But it might be the first time we see the design with a continuous flexible screen, as opposed to the bottom half of the clamshell being a physical keypad or second screen.

The form factor also seems like a good way to protect the display from scratches (then again, a clamshell design isn’t exactly the best form factor if you want to put a case on your device).

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Nevertheless, this patent isn’t necessarily confirmation that Lenovo/Motorola will launch a foldable phone with a clamshell design any time soon (if at all). But it does show us that more manufacturers are looking at flexible screens, as the industry races towards their introduction.

Earlier reports suggest Huawei and Samsung are in the lead to launch a foldable phone with a flexible display. Samsung in particular has been working on flexible displays and foldable phones for years now. It’s believed that the Korean company will launch its foldable phone next year.

What do you make of this patent? Would you buy a phone like this? Let us know in the comments!

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