Published: Sun, December 17, 2017
Science | By Cecil Little

Microsoft's Latest Foldable Design Patent Could Be For The Surface Phone

Microsoft's Latest Foldable Design Patent Could Be For The Surface Phone

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Another day, another Microsoft patent to examine. That's what the company's patent application of a Surface device that appeared on the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) earlier this year had said, and it has resurfaced with the same being listed on the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO) website along with images.

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That sounds as if this isn't so much a patent showing off a specific device as it is a patent that is showing off a hinge that can be used for all sorts of devices. One mode will let you place the device on flat surfaces (no pun intended), letting you view content like movies, videos, pictures, etc. on both the displays.

A couple of patents for the foldable device has been published by Microsoft so far, all of which revolve around the hinge design of the device.

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Granted, the patent mostly focuses on the hinge mechanism rather than a complete, full-fledged device per se, but given that this is supposed to be Microsoft's vision of a mobile future - with, reportedly, phone capabilities - an eventual final product might still make use of pens an integral part of the experience.

The bezel between the two surfaces/displays notably seems incredibly tiny, nearly non-existent, which could allow for an fantastic viewing experience. In the end, Microsoft's design looks a lot like some of the Samsung patents we've seen in the past, but that hinge could prove to be a major differentiating factor. And then there's the regular viewing mode where you can just watch something or check the time, weather, notifications on the primary display of the device. But seeing as how Microsoft has pushed Windows Ink support onto a wide range of systems this year, it's possible a device like this could include that sort of functionality. Which really isn't anything out of the ordinary for a foldable laptop.

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