LG has filed a patent to the World Intellectual Property Organization for a foldable phone/tablet hybrid. The patent, spotted by GSMinfo, describes the device as a “mobile phone with flexible display which can be folded in half.” The South Korean phone manufacturer initially filed the patent in July 2017 and it was published on January 12th, 2018.
The patent showcases two concept variants.
The first, looks more like a foldable tablet featuring a camera component on its back panel. It’s unclear what the second circle is on the rear of the device, but it might be another camera.
On the front side of the phone/tablet hybrid is one large display. When the device is folded it can display information like time on the display.
The second design is similar, however, when the device is folded its rear cover doesn’t completely cover the display. This leaves a little sidebar section of screen visible to show information like time and notifications, for example. The rear of this device also has a camera.
The patent states that the solid lines in the illustrations are the device’s claimed features. The broken lines, — like where it shows the time and the flash below the camera — on the other hand, depict portions of the mobile phone that are not patented.
It’s important to note there is currently no indication when LG will release a phone like this. However, to stay competitive it makes sense that LG would also be looking into the foldable market, as the top phone manufacturer globally, Samsung, is also looking into foldable smartphones.