Apple has reportedly been granted 61 new patents by the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office. As per a report by Patently Apple, the patents are related to future foldable devices and technologies for Apple Watch. One such recently discovered patent hints that Apple may soon develop a foldable smartphone similar to the Samsung Galaxy Z Flip 3. “Electronic devices may be provided that contain multiple housing portions. The housing portions may be coupled together using hinges.” the patent reads.
“When the housing portions in a device are rotated relative to each other, the flexible display may bend. The hinge may be configured to allow the flexible display to be placed in a front-to-front configuration in which an active side of the display faces itself or a back-to-back configuration.” the patent further reads.
The images in the patent application display a device with clamshell style foldable display. The device seen in the patent is very different from the previous foldable device patents from Apple. It gets two housing portions connected with a hinge in the middle. The patent also shows where components of the device such as charging port, speakers, sensor batteries, microprocessors and others might be located.
As this is just another foldable device patent from Apple, we still don’t know whether it will make it to the actual product. To recall, Apple’s first foldable device patent application was filed in 2011 and till now there are no details about any upcoming foldable smartphone.
Last week, a known Apple analyst shared a series of tweets where he revealed that Apple is working on a product with foldable OLED display and PPI between iPhone and iPad, to verify key technologies. Ming-Chi Kuo believes that the company is testing a device with a 9-inch foldable display. This means that we may have to wait a bit longer to see the first foldable Apple iPhone.