Samsung is rumored to be announcing its first flexible phone in the first few months of 2019, but the company seems to already be preparing other bold ideas for future smartphones.
A new patent filed in March this year with the WIPO (World Intellectual Property Office) shows a new tech that will allow the company to use flexible screens to put one display on both sides of a phone.
The example in the patent shows a flexible display that will sit on the front, top and rear of the phone. It doesn't take up all the room on the back of the device though, in fact it's only about a third of the size of the screen on the front.
The aim here is that you could then have a smaller display on the rear of the phone so you can know what you're shooting when taking selfies with the rear camera. Most phones have much better rear cameras, so it would make sense to use that rather than the selfie camera on the front.
One screen, two sides
You'd also be able to use the touchscreen on the rear of the device to control the camera features. In this patent there is still a front camera, but it may be something the company would decide to drop if this phone made it to market.
In this idea, you can also use the top edge of the phone to control certain elements. The patent shows it displaying notifications, the lock for your phone and the music control features as well.
The rear of the display may also show similar information, and it may be that the always-on display features of phones like the Samsung Galaxy S9 could be displayed on both the front and rear of the phone.
This is just a patent so we may never see this technology on devices you can actually buy, but this is an interesting insight into some of the ways Samsung might improve its devices in generations to come.
The next big upgrade expected is the fully flexible Samsung Galaxy X that's rumored to launch next year, but before that we have the Samsung Galaxy Note 9, while the Galaxy S10 will come next year too.