Patent shows Apple researching curved iPhone body with wrap-around display

Source: cnBeta

Future versions of the iPhone may have a display that surrounds the device body, or the shape of the iPhone body may be more rounded. Apple is studying new ways to make a display that can be mounted on a curved surface.

Smart phones and other mobile devices are generally box-shaped. Usually rely on a large plane as the display screen, and the rest of the design is usually composed of sides at a 90-degree angle to each other, which makes their design, manufacturing, and adding components to them relatively simple. This shape may not be so advantageous, because Apple has considered that other shapes of products, such as tubular shells with rounder sides, may be more effective in packing components into small volumes. Switching to a more rounded design will bring some additional problems, the most important of which is the display.

A typical display involves a stack of structures, including a thin film transistor layer for displaying pixels, a color filter layer for adding color to the pixels, a panel for allowing touch input, and a cover glass layer. Although it is simple for the structure when stacked on a flat surface, it becomes tricky to complete for curved or uneven surfaces. In a patent entitled "Electronic Device with Convex Display" granted by the US Patent and Trademark Office on Tuesday, Apple proposed that the device could include a display on a curved surface, such as the body of a smartphone.

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In short, Apple suggests adding one or more flexible display layers on top of the curved cover or under the concave surface of the rigid convex display cover. The touch sensor array is stacked on top or below the flexible display layer. Depending on its structure, a protective layer facing the outside or an internal support structure completes the stacking. The details of the patent show that the display screen can be made of a flexible OLED or LCD panel, the rigid cover layer or shell can be glass, and the reinforcement layer can be made of metal. The display part can also use a flexible polymer substrate for easier application to the cover plate and other components in the stack. Each of the layers can be made quite thin, and the thickness of the flexible display and touch sensor layer may be between 10 microns and 0.5 mm.

Apple submits a large number of patent applications every week, but there is no guarantee that future products or services will use the aforementioned patents.

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Post time: Aug-05-2020