Samsung has developed a technology to hide the photo sensor for selfies under the screen of its smartphones. A patent shows how the South Korean giant will make the front camera invisible to users. Concretely, Samsung plans to slide a tiny retractable screen under the touch screen. Explanations.
This June 19, 2020, Samsung filed a new patent with the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO), report our colleagues from LetsGoDigital. The diagrams describe a “Electronic device comprising a subscreen”. The full functioning of this new technology is explicit in the documents.
On the diagrams, we can see a borderless smartphone whose hole in the screen (which houses the front camera and the LED flash) is not visible. To camouflage this unsightly cavity, Samsung is banking on an assembly of two separate screens, separated by a thin protective transparent layer.
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Samsung imagines a sliding screen hidden under the touchscreen
A screen of reduced size is placed under the AMOLED touchscreen. Activated by a motor and a mechanical device, this tiny slab is capable of slide in front of the front camera when not in use. When the user wants to take a photo or start a video call, this small retractable screen lets the front camera appear. This device obviously recalls the fashion for retractable sensors. In this case, LetsGoDigital is talking about a “Internal pop-up camera”, which sums up the process well.
This technology would allow Samsung to offer a truly borderless screen without sacrificing the photo quality of the selfies. Despite several years of development, the manufacturer has not yet managed to design a cavity transparent enough not to alter the rendering of the photos. Thus, the future Galaxy S21 (S30) must still be content with an Infinity-O screen with a clearly visible punch.
The patent also mentions the integration of an easy recognition system via iris scanner. Similarly, Samsung imagines that the screen that covers the photo sensor could display pop-up information, such as the time, battery level, and messages. Pending official information, there is no indication that Samsung really intends toexploit this screen technology. It is not uncommon for the manufacturer to patent technologies without ever integrating them into products. For example, Samsung notably patented a smartphone with a transparent screen at the start of the year.