IBM patent details a smartwatch with eight fold-out displays that can turn into a tablet

By Digit NewsDesk | Published on Jul 09 2019
IBM patent details a smartwatch with eight fold-out displays that can turn into a tablet

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IBM’s patent was just passed through USPTO.

The patent describes a smartwatch that houses at 8 displays.

With so many smartphone makers trying to get their foldable phones into the market, it is no surprise that some other companies will also try to bank on the ongoing trend. IBM is one such company that might just surprise everyone with a foldable device, which could be a smartwatch whose display folds out into a tablet. Yes, you read that right. As per a report by LetsGoDigital, the company filed for a patent with the USPTO (United States Patent and Trademark Office) in 2016 and the patent was finally granted to the company in June 2019. As per the report, the new patent is titled "Variable display size for an electronic display device." 

The patent shows off some designs of a rectangular shaped smartwatch, with what seems like a thick casing beneath the display. The smartwatch is said to feature a rectangular, bezel-less display that houses seven additional screens underneath. The device is said to have space for four compartments, each of which can house a maximum of two display panels. Sliding out four screen panels are said to readjust the display’s orientation to resemble a smartphone, which means bigger icons and larger images. However, if one still requires a bigger display, they can slide four more screens out to get a display that is as big as a tablet. 

The bezels around the display are said to be minimal so that there’s no interference while viewing a video or an image. The patent is said to not describe if the displays fold out automatically or whether it will be a manual process. However, the device’s longevity will certainly be affected if the process is automated. Each display module that folds out could be 2 × 3-inch in size and when folded out to work as a smartphone, it could sport a 4 × 6-inch screen. In tablet mode, it is said to resemble a screen size of 8 × 12-inch. However, it seems like the height was incorrectly mentioned in the patent since a display length of 12 inches is definitely questionable. 

The smartwatch by IBM could also come equipped with at least one speaker and is touted to work with a mouse and physical keyboard. However, one shouldn’t get their hopes high for a device like this, since it is only a patent, for now. The company may or may not manufacture such a gadget. 


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