- Huawei has filed patents for a phone with a wrap-around display.
- Technical drawings point to similar aesthetics to the Mate X when folded.
- The theoretical device also sports a triple rear camera.
Huawei is reportedly working on a smartphone design with a wrap-around display, according to patents filed in China.
Spotted by LetsGoDigital, the patents came to light this week and paint a picture of a device reminiscent of the foldable Huawei Mate XS when shuttered. A key difference here is that this phone won’t fold, but instead resemble something akin to the Xiaomi Mi Mix Alpha.
Technical drawings suggest the device is almost all-screen upfront, barring a bezel that bookends the screen and extends along its right flank. This edge also houses a power button and volume rocker. The left side tapers with the screen around to the rear while the display is only interrupted by a triple-camera array mounted on a vertical pillar. It also features a speaker grille, SIM tray, and USB-C port along its bottom edge.
Huawei wrap-around display patent
The jury’s still out on the usefulness of wrap-around screens. They’re ripe for attracting gawking onlookers but don’t offer the versatility of foldables and dual-screen phones. Huawei used the wrap-around display on the Mate XS to good effect for viewing selfies and other information snippets when idle, and we imagine this device could employ something similar, too.
There are technical and financial challenges though. The Mi Mix Alpha was said to cost ~$2,800 in China, more expensive than Huawei’s current foldables. Designing a case for this phone would also be a nightmare, and without protection, dropping it would certainly mean an immediate trip to the panel beater.
Related: Everything you need to know about the Huawei ban
That said, this patent filing could simply be another flagpole planted by a big tech company. It doesn’t guarantee we’ll see something like this used on a mainstream device. This year, we’ve seen Samsung file patents for transparent smartphones and Xiaomi bookmark multiple wacky camera designs. Both seem pretty unlikely to headline on their next flagships.
Huawei arguably has more important things to worry about than outlandish concepts. The US ban is set to tighten on September 15, possibly choking Huawei’s supply to chipsets and smartphone displays.