Apple plans to cut a series of grooves inside the glass, which will give the glass a high degree of flexibility, a process known as notching in wood, and the grooves will be filled with elastomer polymers or fluids with the same refractive index as the glass, while the rest of the display will be normal.
The contents of the patent are as follows:
u00b7The display may have one or more layers of structure, such as a groove or a corresponding overlay. The display cover may be formed of glass or other transparent material. The groove may form a flexible part in the display layer, which allows the glass or other transparent material of the display layer to bend around a bending axis.
u00b7The grooves can be filled with polymers or other materials. The display layer may have an opening for filling liquid, and a corresponding groove may be filled with a material having a refractive index matching the glass or polymer structure in the display layer composed of flexible glass or polymer structure.
u00b7The separated rigid plane layer gap can form a hinge. The rigid plane layer can be a glass layer or other transparent layer in the display, or it can be the shell wall or other structural part of the electronic equipment. A flexible layer flush with the relative surface of the rigid plane layer can also be used to span the gap to form a hinge.
From the patent point of view, it is not too complicated for apple to achieve mechanical folding by using soft materials, but this method requires higher manufacturing requirements.
According to it home, some Taiwan media said that Apple will launch the folding iPhone as soon as 2021.