Future Apple Watches could have wider, flexible displays

Apple has been granted a patent (number 11,054,861) for “electronic devices having displays with expanded edges.” It hints at an Apple Watch with a bigger, yet flexible, display.

About the patent 

The patent could also apply to other devices such as the iPhone and iPad. However, the accompanying images (as shown) deal mainly with the smartwatch. In the patent, Apple says that, if care isn’t taken, electronic devices with displays “may not have a desired appearance or may be difficult to use satisfactorily.” For example, displays may be bulky and unattractive or may not accommodate a desired electronic device shape. One solution: wider, more flexible screens with curved surface profiles.

Summary of the patent

Here’s Apple’s summary of the patent: “The display may have a flexible display layer covered by a protective display cover layer. The flexible display layer may be an organic light-emitting diode display layer or other layer with a flexible substrate. The flexible display layer may have a central region with peripheral edges. 

“The central region may be rectangular, may be octagonal, or may have other shapes. Strip-shaped protrusions may extend along each of the peripheral edges of the central region. The strip-shaped protrusions may be bent to provide the protrusions with curved surface profiles. The display cover layer may have a cushion shape with bowed edges that overlap parts of the strip-shaped protrusions, may have curved inner and outer surfaces and/or planar surfaces, may have rounded corners with compound curvature, may have edges with curved surface profiles, and/or may have other configurations.”

Dennis Sellers
the authorDennis Sellers
Dennis Sellers is the editor/publisher of Apple World Today. He’s been an “Apple journalist” since 1995 (starting with the first big Apple news site, MacCentral). He loves to read, run, play sports, and watch movies.