Apple wins a Patent for an Expandable Display that hides the iPhone's Cameras & Eliminates the Notch on Demand
Only July 20, Patently Apple posted an IP report titled "Apple wins their Third Patent for a future iDevice with a Scrollable, Expandable Display." Today, the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office officially granted Apple its fourth patent relating to an iPhone with and expandable display that scrolls from within. Yet, this is a different kind of application. The expandable display is designed to cover the camera/notch area. The expandable display could cover the camera area and notch when the camera is not in use.
Apple's granted patent covers an electronic device with a window region that may overlap a movable portion of the display.
It may be desirable to hide cameras and other input-output devices from view when not in use. Accordingly, the electronic device may be provided with one or more adjustable windows. The windows may be formed in display window regions that overlap input-output devices in the electronic device. For example, a window may overlap a camera or other optical component.
A display window may be operated in open and closed states. In the closed state, the movable portion of the display overlaps the window region and pixels in the movable display portion emit light from the window region.
In the open state, the movable portion of the display is moved away from the window region so that light for the optical component may pass through the window region.
The movable portion of the display may be an integral portion of a flexible display such as a flap of the flexible display that is bent away from remaining portions of the flexible display when opening the display window or may be a rigid display layer that moves about a hinge.
Sliding display arrangements and other display arrangements that allow the movable portion of the display to selectively cover and uncover the window region may be used, if desired. An electrically adjustable actuator may move the movable display portion.
Apple's patent FIG. 1 below is an iPhone with an expandable display. Apple's FIG. 9 is a cross-sectional side view of a portion of an illustrative electronic device (e.g., iPhone) having a window with a bendable display region.
Apple's patent FIG. 13 above illustrates a cross-sectional side view of an illustrative electronic device with a slidable display arranged to cover a display window; FIG. 14 is a cross-sectional side view of the illustrative electronic device of FIG. 13 in which the slidable display has been moved to uncover a window region associated with the display window.
For more details, review Apple's granted patent 11,079,797.