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back to article Apple files patent for iPhone with wraparound display

Apple, whose iPhone has been criticized for having a display that's relatively small when compared with smartphones such as the Samsung S4 and HTC One, has filed a patent application that proposes a novel solution: a display that wraps around the entire handset. Well, not "wraps around," per se, but rather "wraps within." Patent …

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Facepalm

What a good idea

Samsung had when they showed it first: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=N3E7fUynrZU

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Re: What a good idea

Nice try, but the patent was of course filed 26/9/2011 whereas Samsungs video was this year. Not that anyone will care, it's a crap idea. Just because you can doesn't mean you should.

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Re: What a good idea

"Nice try, but the patent was of course filed 26/9/2011 whereas Samsungs video was this year."

Do you honestly think Samsung just knocked it together, or are you sensible enough to realise that in all likelihood they've been working on it for some time - probably since long before Apple filed the patent.

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Facepalm

Re: What a good idea

... just as the saying goes: "Apple does not invent the future, it simply is packaging it" ...

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Headmaster

Re: What a good idea

I'm fairly sure Xerox PARC beat Apple by about four decades:

"The concept of developing a flexible displays was first put forth by Xerox PARC (Palo Alto Research Company). In the(sic) 1974, Nicholas K. Sheridon, a PARC employee, made a major breakthrough in flexible display technology and produced the first flexible e-paper display. Dubbed Gyricon, this new display technology was designed to mimic the properties of paper, but married with the capacity to display dynamic digital images. "

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Re: What a good idea

>Not that anyone will care, it's a crap idea.

The devil is in the details, so I'd find it easier to judge the implementation than the concept.

The fact that many of mates who bought lower-end touch-screen phones ending up regretting it (due to unresponsive screens, no proximity sensor so ones cheek would end a call, a poor lock system so the phone would make 'pocket calls') reminds us that what seems a cool product in the shop can be exasperating after a week of ownership.

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Thumb Down

Sony and Samsung invent it...

...Apple patent the most obvious use for it, that everyone, their mother and possibly canine companion have figured the tech would be used for.

Fucking typical.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Sony and Samsung invent it...

Well, the American patent office approve the patent for it and don't just kick it out immediately for being an obvious application of a technology. There in lies the problem.

More fool Sony and Samsung for not trying to patent it first.

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Mushroom

Re: Sony and Samsung invent it...

AARRGH.

Patents are for -a method of acheiving something-, not for -the idea of wanting something to be acheived-!

200 people can patent wrap-around displays that have the same functionality, and in theory at least they can all be perfectly valid. And within a patent like this there are usually quite a few elements that are individually called out.

I'm no patent attorney, but I wish to hell that people would at least understand what a patent is before letting fly with the self-righteous outrage.

I swear to god, if I see one more brilliant pundit chime in on a patent discussion saying, "Haha hahaha im gonna patent air then u cant breath lololol dumb appletards" I'm going to go out of my fucking mind.

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Re: Sony and Samsung invent it...

"200 people can patent wrap-around displays that have the same functionality, and in theory at least they can all be perfectly valid"

But only Apple would try and sue the other 199 patent holders for patent infringement.

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Joke

@ David WRe: Sony and Samsung invent it...

Wrote :- "if I see one more brilliant pundit chime in on a patent discussion saying, "Haha hahaha im gonna patent air then u cant breath lololol dumb appletards" I'm going to go out of my fucking mind."

Here you go then :-

Haha hahaha im gonna patent air then u cant breath lololol dumb appletards.

Have a nice trip.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Sony and Samsung invent it...

Yeah ONLY Apple - bad Apple - as all these other corporates would never sue for patent infringement - get real.

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Mushroom

Re: @ David WSony and Samsung invent it...

"Haha hahaha im gonna patent air then u cant breath lololol dumb appletards."

ARRRRRRBLARHGLBHARRLAlarhBLARHBLAHAAAACKKKKKKALOHHhGGgggARLBArgALBARP!!!

CAN'T SIT THE CHEERY STONES! OVER THERE IT GOES! LOOK! IN THE GROUND! IT'S A SKY, IT'S MANORSOUP! LARRY LARRY QUITE contRARY HOW DDOS belbiumn DUTCH DUTCH DUTCH daarlpla DARPA Snapple wrapper apple clappeprT!@#@@

AWHOOOOOOGA

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Re: Sony and Samsung invent it...

>"Haha hahaha im gonna patent air then u cant breath lololol

Your post infringes Ben Elton's IP : D http://www.goodreads.com/book/show/1060812.Gasping

The script of Ben Elton's first play. A satire on big business, the media and product exploitation. Designer air proves to be the marketing phenomenon of the decade, but as demand outstrips supply, Lockheart Industries plunders the Third World for resources. The world is starting to gasp, and only the biggest suckers survive.

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Display under display

I seem to remember that last year Acer demo`d a duel mode tablet/e-reader that had the e-ink screen on top of an amoled one (or below, cant remember) giving either a full colour android tablet mode or a low power b&w e-reader mode depending on which screen was powered up. Not quite the same, but a similar concept to Apples duel screen thing.

And as the poster above me said, im sure Samsung have already played around with the wrap around, bendy screens.

Im really liking where consumer technology is heading, this year is going to be quite exiting with stuff like this coming to market.

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FAIL

Nooooooooo!!!!11!11!!!

The current fad for high gloss finish glass displays is already a PITA in all sorts of lighting conditions.

A curved surface is going to be almost impossible to get into a position without reflections making some or all of the screen unreadable, especially on a hand help device.

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Coat

Re: especially on a hand help device.

What do fleshlights have to do with it?

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Re: Nooooooooo!!!!11!11!!!

>The current fad for high gloss finish glass displays is already a PITA in all sorts of lighting conditions.

My understanding was that OLED displays were less prone to this issue. Anyway, don't worry, it's just a patent application, not a product implementation.

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Oh great

Now they can run ads on the back while you talk on the phone.

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Re: Oh great

Yes, but wouldn't it be great to hack?

"This user is watching porn", "Dial my sex line now", "He is actually taking pictures of your skirt, you know" - ah, the prank possibilities are endless.

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Boffin

Re: Oh great

Uhm... Just a nit. If you create a wrap around display, there is no back.

There also isn't an easy way to replace the battery, or sim.

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Stop

Is it just me?

Some of these ideas don't seem well thought out. Like the facial tracking. Why have what is effectively a front and back screen when the device is going to move the current app to the side you're looking at? So they're going to power all the screen but only give you effective use of one? I mean what's the other side for? For your friends to look at in envy?

Not to mention the potential problems they'll have with the antennas and the battery. Not that IPhone has a user replaceable battery right? But presumably we can swap caps around. I'm guessing that's the first thing to break if, heaven forbid, you drop the thing. Which would be a bad thing if the antenna really is located there.

Sure, they'll probably work out the kinks if/when they bring this to market, but I'm still puzzled how I'm supposed to use both sides if everything is repositioned to the side I'm currently working on.

Wait.. wouldn't this have a tendency to slide on anything that's not level? It's going to have less surface area touching your desk.

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Facepalm

Re: Is it just me?

Well, a few moments' thought yielded: You could have a multi-app environment where the main thing followed your view so you could always see it (or a variant of it), but the rest of the UI was 'stuck to its real positioe' on the screen. So, say, you're on a call but you want to write down a note. You take the phone away from your ear and the front face has the regular phone screen on it, but when you flip it, you see your normal apps. But since it knows you're looking at the back side now, it puts a smaller call status line on the back screen.

This would have an advantage in that the status line would only have to be big enough to read, rather than needing enough space to include controls.

There are actually quite a few neat things you could do with this. But trashing everything without bothering to consider things for even a moment -does- have the advantage of helping one convince one's self of one's superiority...

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Re: Is it just me?

"There are actually quite a few neat things you could do with this. But trashing everything without bothering to consider things for even a moment -does- have the advantage of helping one convince one's self of one's superiority..."

The irony that is you're lecturing me with the same smug sense of superiority that I supposedly have. Well they do say the internet is tone deaf so perhaps I misjudge.

You bring up some good points. Certainly some apps need not dominate the screen when working on other things. Though this would seem to be a minor convenience over regular task switching and limited to a select few applications. Perhaps it would be better to not move all apps and only move the ones you specify (a whitelist).

This design might have a few 'neat' features, but samsung's clam-shell/book design seems more practical to me. If you're going after more screen real estate that is. It certainly doesn't tax the processor with facial recognition or drain the battery with the camera. Though I must say the idea of rolled up display in the other design sample sounds ill advised to me. Just seems like it'd wear out faster.

And for the record I'm not trying to make this an Apple vs. Samsung thing. It's just that someone linked a video to the demo of their OLED flexible screens. So that was the example at hand.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Is it just me?

Well said Sir/Madame.

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Def
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Re: Is it just me?

I guess the ultimate goal might be to have a device that has no conceptual front and back, or top and bottom. However you pick it up, it orientates itself to always be the right way up. Something you can almost achieve without a wrap around screen - if it weren't for those pesky buttons on the side.

Presumably, too, the curviness of the display was greatly exaggerated in the patent application.

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@Def Re: Is it just me?

" ... - if it weren't for those pesky buttons on the side."

With a touch sensitive surface, there would be no need for buttons. You'd just use swiping or whatever gestures in place of physical controls. For an audio connection, you'd have to use bluetooth (or similar) and it would use wireless charging. When turned off, it would appear to be a featureless black rectangular slab - very cool.

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Re: Is it just me?

Indeed, it seems kind of pointless to have a screen on the back. The only use I could see for it is if the back screen were capable of being hinged round to double the size of your screen on the front.

PS: I'd rather phone manufacturers would bring back something useful like QWERTY sliders rather than faffing about with such ideas with little practical benefit.

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Re: Is it just me?

I guess the ultimate goal might be to have a device that has no conceptual front and back, or top and bottom

So that'll be a ball then :). Use wireless charging and connecting and a Bluetooth headset and it doesn't even need to have holes, so it could be waterproof too (and no searching for the connector jack). Alternatively, a cylinder.

Is that your phone in your pocket or .. (etc)..

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Facepalm

Re: Is it just me?

"I guess the ultimate goal might be to have a device that has no conceptual front and back, or top and bottom. However you pick it up, it orientates itself to always be the right way up."

Maybe Apple got sick of being the butt of all the "You're holding it wrong" jokes and decided to fix it once and for all.

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Joke

Re: Is it just me?

"The irony that is you're lecturing me with the same smug sense of superiority that I supposedly have."

Well, in my case it's OK, because I'm right. :)

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Mushroom

Re: @Def Is it just me?

"it would appear to be a featureless black rectangular slab"

And once it's superseded by the next big shiny, we can ship all the "waste" off to Jupiter.

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Re: @Def Is it just me?

But that black slab made us smart .

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Def
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@frank ly

"With a touch sensitive surface, there would be no need for buttons. You'd just use swiping or whatever gestures in place of physical controls."

You misread what I said; That was my exact point. If it weren't for the physical buttons on the side you could already just put a screen on the back and detect which screen is up, which is down, and where the top is.

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Anonymous Coward

Dear Apple

Any chance you could spare a few drones for a few minutes from all this patenting the bleeding obvious and put them to work addressing the fact that text selection and editing on iOS is so painfully piss-poor and badly implemented it makes me want to headbutt walls every time I try to write anything on my iGadgets?

No? Thought not. Let's just keep wrapping more gold leaf around the turd instead.

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Re: Dear Apple - say what?

Have you tried doing the same things on an Android device?

I speak only from experience of the Galaxy SII, but I had one for 14 months and talking of headbutting walls - well that would be like saying I was mildly irritated. My blood pressure was so high at times I scared people, an cam so close to throwing the thing in the ocean that I scared myself. Now that I have moved to an iPhone I am so *SO* much happier, and calmer, and more rational...

Seriously, guy, if you find the iPhone hard to type text on there must either be something wrong with the device or with you.

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Re: Dear Apple - say what?

I've got no problem typing on either iOS or Android phones but text selection on both is shit. I can generally retype something faster than trying to select & copy it. I've got no ideas for a better implementation unless they put a ball on them like a Blackberry.

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Holmes

Re: Dear Apple - say what?

@ChrisBedford

No problem typing on my Galaxy S3, even when not using the keyboard in swipey mode which is most of the time. Have a special keyboard for SSH, etc, so I can do cursor & control chars which is tappy-only. No idea if you can install different (not as in language) keyboard on ithings but all of these work great, really well, in fact.

Plus it can display fucking lower case keys on the keyboard, too. How modern

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Re: Dear Apple

Had 'm a d r a' achived a calmer state, he might have supported his point by noting that Android devices allow a 3rd party keyboard to be used system-wide, whereas 3rd-party iOS keyboards can't be used all the time.

I have mixed feeling about how much control to allow a user... I like having as much control as possible, in case my use-case has not been fully envisioned by the original designer.... at the same time, I wish some of my friends' systems were locked down, so I didn't get called upon to repair the damage they themselves did.

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Meh

Mmm... wobbly...

This is a lovely bit of design but somewhat impractical. My first accessory purchase would have to be a case with 'feet' on the back, so that when it's lying flat on the desk and I'm using the Calculator app, it doesn't keep pinging across the room like a giant tiddlywink.

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Re: Mmm... wobbly...

Indeed. One of the more (to me) obvious things that you'd think mobe manufacturers would take into account. If I'm sitting at a desk and a text comes in, or an email, and I need to reply why should I have to pick the damn phone up to be able to type on it? Or use the other hand to hold it steady, which amounts to the same thing. Stoopid, stoopid, stoopid.

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Re: Mmm... wobbly...

A rubber case?

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Mushroom

I so wish they still had the "working model" requirement for patents

ie, you can't file the patent unless you also provide a working implementation of said invention...

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Re: I so wish they still had the "working model" requirement for patents

Or you can file a preliminary as a time-expiring placeholder to prevent other very similar filings being granted but not enforce till you demonstrate functionality.

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Yet again!

More demonstrations that the Patent system is broken.

There is no invention, novelty or cleverness about this.

It's not even distinctive enough for US "Design Patent" = UK "Registered Design". Too generic. You can't register a bottle, but you can have the distinctive "coke" bottle with waist and fluted shoulders (reminiscent of the seed) as US "Design Patent" = UK "Registered Design".

Most of the current US Patents and "Design patents" should be ruled invalid. All of the Software ones.

We have Copyright. Which again can't protect the generic.

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This post has been deleted by its author

If crApple can sue a competitor who produces a rectabgle with rounded corners...

... then Sony should sue for such an oval side-profile resembling the Sony Ericsson Vivaz.

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Anonymous Coward

I need a job....

....with the US patents Office. WOrk wouldbe so easy, just grant patents and go home at 5pm.

How about it, please?

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