Published: Sat, March 16, 2019
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Google Foldable Phone Patent Surfaces Online; See Details

Google Foldable Phone Patent Surfaces Online; See Details

This is already a sign that Google is interested in foldable devices and wants to ensure that users would get a great Android experience on devices that can quickly switch between laptop and tablet mode.

The search engine giant's interest in foldable smartphones is being speculated to be more inclined towards the software aspect of their designs, because typically, Google does not produce displays or handsets on its own.

Several major phone manufacturers are scrambling to bring out foldable phones to rival the Samsung Galaxy Fold and Huawei Mate X, and now it seems Google is planning to enter the fray.

The folks at Patently Mobile have discovered a patent application from Google for a foldable smartphone - the flip phone variety.

Google’s foldable patent hints at a compact clamshell phone

As well as a clamshell-style unit (Fig.2), we also see what looks like a Z-folding approach (Fig.3), and possibly what taking a selfie or video calling may look like on the unit (the first image). Samsung and Huawei have already launched their first foldable smartphone while others like Xiaomi and Oppo have already teased their versions of a foldable phone.

Now patents have revealed that Google are at least doing their due diligence and investigating foldable Pixel phones. The last picture shows the nature of the curved part of the device which, similar to the Galaxy Fold, would leave a gap. The device will have a single inward fold, according to the patent images. The Galaxy Fold was unveiled in two stages, in early November and mid-March, while the Huawei Mate X was announced at MWC a few days after the Fold. In other words, Google isn't willing to be left out.

That said, there's no telling when Google will launch a foldable Pixel phone, but the fact that Google is looking at ways of manufacturing sturdy foldable devices seems to suggest it's seriously considering the new form factor.

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