The latest intriguing patent application comes from Microsoft. And apparently the company seems intent on splitting your next smartphone into two parts.
The two parts could work independently of each other, or could combine (physically too, via “magnetic attraction”) when needed. Each part would have a touchscreen, and while combined would function as your run of the mill smartphone.
But what happens when you’re on the phone with someone and that person gives you an address you need to go to? If Microsoft’s patent application ever becomes reality, you’d just split off the two parts, use one to continue the conversation (be it a voice call or a video call), and use the other part to search for the address and use mapping software to navigate to it.
The two parts would always communicate with each other, and they’d also know roughly how far the other one is, and what it’s being used for. So because one part knows, for example, that you’re using the other part to make a voice call, it could react accordingly.
This is just one use case for Microsoft’s envisioned tech. But there are many other possibilities. Microsoft thinks dragging and dropping stuff on a smartphone is harder than it should be nowdays, and this setup would make that easier.
Of course, you can think of this as just a way of doing two full screen things at the same time. That’s simply impossible with a smartphone nowdays, but it wouldn’t be in this case – since you literally get two screens. So, in brief, this is multitasking on a mobile device taken to a whole new level.
Sure, for this to actually work that combined device would probably be quite large. Then again, people seem pretty happy with the 5.3-inch Samsung Galaxy Note, so that may not be a big issue.
It’s certainly an interesting concept, this. Yet it’s not even a patent yet. Becoming that will probably take a few years. As for actual availability in the marketplace, like always with patents and patent applications, it seems pretty far-fetched. Although this does have the potential to turn into a very compelling new form factor for smartphones or other mobile devices.
If you liked the post, you might find these interesting too:
- Microsoft has its own Project Glass – augmented reality glasses/wearable computer combo
- Microsoft Veda. New look at mobile convergence
- Palm is working on a palmtop with detachable cellphone
- Microsoft wants to patent a tablet that can really transform into a laptop, or even desktop PC
- Microsoft Communicator Mobile launched for Nokia Eseries smartphones