The launch of the iPhone 6 brought with it concerns about the inadvertent flexibility of the device, but two years after “Bend-gate” it looks like Apple is looking to make a phone that is actually meant to bend.
The company on Tuesday was awarded yet another patent for bendable iPhone parts, this time for “flexible display devices.” The patent’s text describes an electronic device that is housed in multiple sections connected by hinges with a flexible screen.
The latest patent follows the award of several other flexible element patents to Apple in the last year. Earlier this month, Apple was granted a patent for “electronic devices with carbon nanotube printed circuits” that would “resist cracking when bent,” and back in March secured a patent for “flexible electronic devices” that might include “a flexible display, a flexible housing, and one or more flexible internal components configured to allow the flexible electronic device to be deformed.”
Interestingly, it seems the idea of a flexible device was on Apple’s mind even before September 2014’s “Bend-gate” debacle.
The patents for “flexible display devices” and the carbon nanotube circuits were filed in July and August 2014, respectively. The company followed up with its fleshed out application for “flexible electronic devices” with bendable OLED displays in January 2015.
Of course, just because it has the patents doesn’t mean Apple will use them. But the thought is certainly there, so we’ll have to wait and see.