A pair of engineers at palmOne recently received a patent on a cellular-wireless handheld with a folding display.
Rich Gioscia and Francis Canova have a patent for a “Compact palmtop computer system and wireless telephone with foldable dual-sided display.”
Essentially, their device would take a regular tablet-style handheld, cut it in half longways, and fold it over.
When closed, it would act a mobile phone. Opening it up would reveal, not a screen and keyboard as are typically found on clamshell models, but a single large screen that folds in the middle.
Just because this patent was awarded recently doesn’t mean that the release of this device is imminent. Gioscia and Canova filed this patent back in 2001. Also, the technology to make folding screens is still mostly in the laboratory, and not ready for production.
Still, palmOne could make a clamshell model with two separate screens; this is how the Nintendo DS is designed.
On the other hand, this could simply be a concept model that a pair of engineers dreamed up that palmOne liked enough to patent, but not enough to actually put into production.
All the details on this device can be found on the U.S. Patent Office web site.
Thanks to Sammy at Palm Addict for the tip.