Following Huawei P20 launch, a foldable phone could be coming soon

Huawei foldable phone

The new Huawei P20 with three rear cameras shows that the Chinese phone maker is able to push the technology envelope, and so does its latest patent for a foldable phone.

It shows what is obviously a smartphone with a bendable display in several diagrams, according to the new Huawei patent filing the Dutch publication LetsGoDigital discovered today.

Photo Credit: LetsGoDigital

Photo Credit: LetsGoDigital

The idea behind a futuristic-looking, bendable phone is to give users a tablet-sized display (ideal during long commutes), but let you fold it up into a smartphone-sized form factor (to slip into a pocket).

There's no telling if Huawei will be able to pull off a foldable phone design in time for the sequels to the Huawei Mate 10 Pro or P20 and P20 Pro next year. However, it has indicated that it's very keen to beat Samsung and Apple to a bendable phone. 

Getting rid of that gap

What's holding back Huawei –  the world's No. 3 phone manufacturer behind Apple and Samsung of phones – from launching the world's first truly foldable phone?

It doesn't want to a with a gap in the middle of two screens, according to comments from Huawei CEO Richard Yu. That's exactly the design of the ZTE Axon M.

Huawei wants to avoid this foldable phone flaw

Huawei's new patent seems to solve that problem with a bendable display, but that's merely on paper. There are no signs of Huawei foldable prototype hardware yet.

The other issue may be the durability of such technology. We were recently told that the science behind such a display isn't there to endure so many folds.

Samsung, Lenovo, Sony, LG, Apple and now Huawei all appear to be sketching out plans for a truly foldable phone. It's only a matter of time for one of them to claim that coveted world's first title.

Matt Swider