Google files patent for 'Z-fold' display technology

Google Foldable Smartphone Design Tipped by Patent

Its Pixel phones are no doubt safe, but the Pixelbook series, and perhaps new prospects like a Google foldable, may not survive the restructure. The tech giant is rumoured to be working on a foldable smartphone.

Foldable smartphones are the flavour of the year for smartphone companies. Samsung and Huawei have already launched two foldable devices, while other companies confirmed that similar mechanisms are in the making or teased early foldable phone concepts.

"Hence it is also likely that Google licences the foldable screen out to a third-party rather than producing it by itself".

The upcoming Samsung Galaxy Fold.

According to the patent application, the device is said to include a foldable display that folds inwards.

Google’s foldable patent hints at a compact clamshell phone
Is Google building a foldable Pixel phone?

But a patent application, first found by Patently Apple reveals that Google has been actively studying foldable screen technology.

The aforesaid patent gives us a brief glimpse of a smartphone that seems to bear a striking resemblance to the 2019 version of the Motorola RAZR.

In other words, if a Google folding phone is in the works, Google probably won't be in a hurry to reach the market with it, or use it to pioneer a unique Z-folding design. In particular, creating sturdy, durable Z-fold displays (i.e., displays with both inward and outward folds) is greatly complicated by the fragility of the thin-film layers in the display stack.

Google added support for foldable displays into Android in November.

Further, Google is rumored to have asked those with roles in its tablet and laptop division to find other positions in the company, suggesting hardware development is being deprioritized, or that there won't pursue as many hardware lines in the future. This is a form factor a few other companies are looking at, including Samsung, for a Fold-successor.

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