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Apple patent details a foldable iPhone with ‘self-healing display’

Over the last 18 months, foldable smartphones have really begun to take off. Samsung had a rough start with the Galaxy Fold but found its footing with the Galaxy Z Flip. Since then, Microsoft, Motorola and other smartphone companies have also tried their hands at foldable displays. Now behind the scenes, Apple is working on a foldable iPhone.

An Apple patent discovered over the weekend details a foldable device with a “self-healing” display. As reported by Patently Apple, the filing, made back in January, says: “During operation of an electronic device, the display cover layer for the electronic device may be scratched or dented. To improve the aesthetics of the electronic device, it may be desirable for the presence of scratches and dents to be minimized. To help mitigate the number of dents, scratches, or other imperfections in a display cover layer, the display cover layer may include a layer of self-healing material.”


Image via Patently Apple

This self-healing process “may occur in the layer of self-healing material without prompting”. To promote flexibility, the display cover layer may also include “a transparent dielectric layer with slits”. These slits would be filled with an “index-matching” material.

The illustration for this device looks like it could well be a foldable iPhone, or a next-gen form of iPad. Of course it is worth noting that just because Apple has patented and experimented with this technology, this should not be considered as definitive evidence that such a device will ever release to consumers.

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KitGuru Says: I’m very interested in seeing more companies try their hands at foldable display devices. A new form of iPhone or iPad would be particularly interesting. Have any of you used a foldable phone in the last year? What do you make of this latest trend?

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