As two Huawei Foldable Smartphone Patents Surface the Company Announces a Foldable Smartphone Event on Feb. 24
In late May 2018 Patently Apple posted a report about Huawei's future foldable smartphone (see the photo below). Huawei is reportedly working with BOE for the flexible/foldable displays. Samsung and Huawei will be introducing their first generation foldable smartphones at their respective events later this month. Samsung will be introducing theirs on February 20th in San Francisco while Huawei will be introducing theirs on February 24th, days ahead of their scheduled MWC Keynote on February 26th. Huawei's teaser ad, as noted in our cover graphic, was released early this morning.
Earlier this morning I discovered two Huawei patent applications in the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office's database that were published in the last month.
Huawei notes in their patent application that a large-screen mobile phone has an obvious advantage over a small-screen mobile phone in visual and entertainment experience.
Currently, there is a trend that a majority of flagship mobile phone products of mainstream manufacturers are designed with large screens. However, compared with a small-screen mobile phone, a large-screen mobile phone has great disadvantages in holding comfortability and portability.
As flexible display panels are gradually put into commercial use, foldable mobile phones become a main direction of development of next-generation mobile phones by mainstream device manufacturers, thanks to their characteristics of flexible and variable sizes of display panels in different usage scenarios. However, in a folding or unfolding process, a flexible display panel is easily damaged due to bending or squeezing, and a service life of a mobile phone is greatly shortened.
To resolve the foregoing technical problems, embodiments of this application provide a foldable component, where the foldable component is configured to bear a flexible display panel and protect the flexible display panel from damage in a folding or unfolding process.
It should be noted that while the patent figures presented below match the design of their prototype as noted above, there's no guarantee that this will reflect the final appearance of their finished product because patent applications only convey a concept and not necessarily an official design.
We'll know on February 24th if Huawei was able to thin down the design found in their patent figures or not.
Huawei's patent FIG. 1 above is a schematic view of a mobile terminal in a folded state; FIG. 4 is a schematic exploded view of a mobile terminal in an unfolded state.
Huawei's patent FIG. 6 below is a schematic exploded view of a foldable mechanism in a bent state; FIG. 8 is a schematic status diagram of a foldable mechanism in a bending process.
In Huawei's second patent, they provide an alternative folding hinge design. Huawei's patent FIG. 1 below is a schematic structural view of a mobile terminal unfolded according to an embodiment of this application; FIG. 2 is a schematic structural view of a mobile terminal folded
Huawei's patent FIG. 3 below is a sectional structural view of an A-A part in FIG. 1; FIG. 4 is a sectional structural view of a C-C part in FIG. 2; and FIG. 5 is a schematic structural view of a bending support component of a mobile terminal.