Apple has filed new Trademarks in Hong Kong and Europe while being granted a Design Patent for the Vision Pro Travel Case
This week 12 more interesting Apple Vision Pro & Smart Glasses Patents were published covering a collapsible Head Cap, Camera Systems+

With the PC market continuing to fall, Apple & PC OEMs are working to deliver next-gen notebook form factors with expandable displays & more

1 cover Samsung Patent fig of notebook with expandable display

A PC laptop or MacBook is for students and professionals that need a mobile computer with them at all times. It's a workhorse device. Yet the PC industry has experienced a nearly 25% decline since Q3 2021, from 84.1 million units to just 64.3 million units in the three month period ending Sept. 30, 2023.

With that in mind, the PC industry is working on new form factors in the hopes of  exciting consumers back to wanting to upgrade because simply adding 10% more CPU power, a little more RAM or an OLED display may not by themselves be enough to stimulate sales to a large degree.

Next generation form factors are being worked on by several PC OEMS. The biggest trend on the horizon is the hybrid foldable tablet/notebook. HP introduced their Spectre Foldable in late 2023. The Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Fold is another example. Lenovo has also introduced a prototype at CES that has the display expand vertically via a rollable display concept as presented below or see the video.

(Click on image to Enlarge) 2 Lenovo prototype of notebook with vertical expanding display via a rollable display  2023

One of Lenovo's next-gen notebook concepts introduces a notebook with a transparent display that will debut at the Mobile World Conference show next week.

3 lenovo notbook with transparent display

A year ago, CNET posted a video about future foldable and rollable displays from Apple supplier Samsung as presented below that even includes tablets that both fold and extend horizontally with a scrollable/rollable display.

This week, a new patent application from Samsung revealed yet another new laptop concept: A notebook with a rollable display allowing the laptop display to expand vertically left and right as presented in Samsung's patent figures below.

4 Samsung Notebook with vertical rollable display expansion  - patently mobile - patently apple . com

For more details, review Samsung's U.S. patent application 20240061470 published by USPTO on Thursday Feb. 22, 2024.

Only one Apple patent has spelled out exactly what one of their foldable devices could be. In 2021 Patently Apple posted a report titled " Apple Finally Reveals that one of their Foldable Display Patents is now Focused on being a Foldable Laptop," as in a foldable hybrid iPad/Laptop. The patent revealed in 16 out of 20 patent claims that the foldable was specifically related to a "laptop."

5 Snapdragon X

Rumors have suggested that a group of PC OEMs will be introducing hybrid tablet-notebooks when Qualcomm's new Snapdragon X processor emerges that could take on the power of Apple's M-Series processors and backed by Windows 12.

Patent wise, Apple has prepared for such an attack by their competitors against the iPad which has been slowly losing some ground. Apple is likely to play a wait and see game first prior to committing to such a project. The first big wave of this new form of device is expected roll out in the 2024-25 timeline. Other laptop form factors, as presented in this report, may also be debuting over the next few years.

Though in the bigger picture, Apple Vision Pro has shown us that mechanical expandable displays will be less attractive long-term for some. Over the next decade, as Vision Pro and competing XR headsets become affordable, expandable displays won't be as appealing. As illustrated below, Apple Vision provides its users with the ultimate work environment with multiple giant virtual display. It's the future now. Yet until Spatial Computers are mainstream at affordable prices, the industry is betting that delivering new form factors will shake things up in the market.   

6. Apple Vision Pro for Work  large expandable virtual displays

In terms of a next-gen desktop, Apple patented one the coolest designs with a glass body back in 2020 as presented below. Will Apple have the courage to introduce something this radical. Apple likes to play it safe, so probably not. Too bad.

7 Apple  glass iMac

10.0x35 Patently Mobile


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