Over the years, we have gotten accustomed to seeing new ideas around potential user devices from Apple that feature a brand new form factor. This is one of those ideas!
Based on a recent patent that was approved today, Apple is exploring a potential new form factor for an electronic device that has a wrapped display.
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Wrapped display on your next Apple device?
According to the patent, which was filed this year on July 21st, an electronic device with a hollow display cover structure is described in the details.
A material such as sapphire, other crystalline materials, or other transparent materials may be used in forming the hollow display cover structure.
A flexible display layer such as an organic light-emitting diode display layer (OLED) or other flexible display structure may be wrapped around the longitudinal axis to cover the interior surface of the hollow display cover structure.
The electronic device may have a touch sensor, accelerometer, gyroscope, and other sensors for gathering input such as user input.
Here’s the kicker.
The electronic device may use one or more sensors to gather information on the rotational motion of the device and can display content on the flexible display layer accordingly.
Rotate to see more information
This would be the first of an Apple user interface design, where you actually rotate the device body to get additional information.
The device may display content that moves or that remains at a fixed location on the surface of the flexible display layer.
For example, the electronic device may display pages of content on the display layer in response to tilt events or other motions of the device.
The electronic device may also adjust scrolling activity and other on-screen content motions based on detected device rotation and other measured movements of the device.
If desired, content can be displayed in synchronization with the rotation of the electronic device about the longitudinal axis so that the displayed content remains at a fixed location relative to a user.
Are 360-degree devices the future of Apple products?
The patent background suggests that electronic devices with front surface displays (today’s iPhone) or conventional display configurations can be unnecessarily limiting and hence the need to explore a device that has a wrapped around display.
As with any approved patent, it is unclear if this new idea will ever become a real product in the near future but it is interesting to see that Apple researchers are actually exploring various other form factors for popular devices that have not seen a major change over the last ten years.