We’ve seen multiple foldable as of late, in patent sketches or the actual devices themselves, and we’ve also seen transparent display as recent as CES 2019 where LG showed off their own 77-inch flexible and transparent 4K UHD OLED screen. However, a recent patent is showing that LG has decided to combine the two technologies into a smartphone.
The patent in question, titled “Mobile Terminal”, was filed more than three years earlier but was only just approved and published, as seen on the patent published by the United States Patent and Trademark Office.
The smartphone consists of a large flexible screen on outside and inside that can be expanded to a tablet mode with narrow bezels. Once opened, the flexible display acts as two side that can independently display transparent or opaque content with the degree of transparency depending on the viewing angle. If the smartphone is flat, the transparency is minimal. As soon as you fold the device a little, the transparency increases and you can look through the screen.
If the transparency of the display is higher than 20%, the rear touch sensor is activated. In other words, when you can’t see your own hand through the screen, it is also possible to operate the smartphone from the rear - no matter how you hold the phone.
The patent also goes into the camera system - a front camera will be present and there will be a rear camera system with multiple lenses.
This design that LG is proposing is quite fascinating and it’s surprising to know that this was filed years ago. But their timing couldn’t be better because we’ve seen the technology in action and other brands are venturing into foldable phones. This could be a way for LG to be different from their competitors.