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Samsung is still working on that foldable smartphone

Samsung has just filed a new patent for a foldable smartphone that gives us a closer look at how such a smartphone might function.

Published onNovember 9, 2016

Illustration from one of Samsung's many foldable device patents

Samsung has reportedly been working on a foldable smartphone for many years now, and it seems that the company is still refreshing its ideas. A new batch of renders for a patent application published earlier today give us perhaps our best look yet at how such a folding smartphone might work.

The selection of images show a central hinge point that is located half way along the phone’s display. This then allows the phone to bend slightly, making it a more ergonomic fit in the hand and which may be especially convenient for phone calls. This hinge can be extended further still to essentially fold the phone in half for easy portability. Although the two displays don’t appear to rest flat against each other when closed.

Unfortunately, as this is a patent application there’s no indication that such a design is going to appear in a consumer smartphone any time soon. Although Samsung has previously suggested that flexible handsets aren’t that far away, and whisperings point to a possible unveiling of the company’s first bendable smartphone at MWC 2017. Samsung isn’t the only company working on bendable phones though, we’ve already gone hands on with Lenovo’s concept handset.

Lenovo foldable smartphone and tablet concept hands on

It’s seems very unlikely that this design is in anyway related to next year’s Galaxy S8 flagship, as Samsung won’t risk alienating existing fans with an entirely new design. Instead, we’re probably looking at a limited concept Galaxy release more along the lines of the LG G Flex, if this or a similar design ever actually ends up coming to the market.

A foldable smartphone from Samsung would certainly be an exciting new announcement, but it remains to be seen if it would be a market game changer. What do you think about the design?

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