There are rumors in the tech world that Microsoft could make a swift return to the smartphone market. The American company will be take a different approach this time around. Microsoft is looking to launch a foldable “Surface Phone.” However, these rumors haven’t been confirmed yet.
Windows Latest is reporting that Microsoft has filed a patent for a new hinge design that is expected to be used in the foldable phone. The design is called “Hinge with Free-Stop Function.” The technology will connect two different screens in a way that the hinge mechanism does not protrude or stick out.
This means that the phone can easily sit flat on your hands whether folded or unfolded. The idea of launching a foldable smartphone has been inspired by a number of things. Microsoft says that there is a huge demand for bigger screens on mobile devices.
Smartphone companies have done very well to increase the size of the displays. But Microsoft thinks that screens have become so big to the extent of consuming the entire viewing surface of the phone. Any attempt to expand the screen size more cannot work without expanding the size of the phone. This is where the foldable screen comes in. Microsoft says that its technology allows smartphone owners to enjoy bigger and richer displays without affecting the user experience.
The company notes that the two displays are carefully integrated so that it feels as if there is only one screen. There is no doubt that this is quite an interesting idea. Nonetheless, there aren’t a lot of portable dual display devices out there. Other than the Nintendo 3DS video game console, one can’t really think of any notable device that features a dual screen.
But it’s very easy to see where Microsoft is coming from. As long as people continue to demand bigger screens for their mobile devices, smartphone makers will need to find a possible solution that guarantees bigger screens without necessarily making the phones too big to carry. Besides, a dual screen would also have a few other benefits. It could make it easier for users to multitask. For example, you could easily be reading a document on one screen while taking notes on the other.
It’s not yet clear when will Microsoft have the technology ready for market. The fact that a patent has been filed means that development is almost complete but of course there are other hurdles that need to be crossed before the dual screen is produced for mass use. The foldable surface could also inspire other smartphone companies to start thinking in this line.
Whether there will be any smartphone brand that picks up this idea in the coming months is still a mystery. It will not be surprising though if Microsoft decides to take on Apple and Samsung for a share of the global smartphone market using this technology.