Flexible and Text-able


At one point in time the key features of a cell phone were to make calls and receive texts, and while that may still be true, cellphones have several other wonderful features such as: automated scheduling, wireless connection to all sorts of things, and the ability to publicly display ugly selfies. Now we may be exploring another “never before seen”  feature in the somewhat near future.

Researchers at Queen’s University of Human Media Lab in Ontario, Canada, claimed to have developed a smartphone capable of receiving user multitouch and bend input. Essentially, the phone would allow users to curve the screen in or out to control some applications while maintaining the customary user input method of touch. “When this smartphone is bent down on the right, pages flip through the fingers from right to left, just like they would in a book. More extreme bends speed up the page flips. Users can feel the sensation of the page moving through their fingertips via a detailed vibration of the phone. This allows eyes-free navigation making it easier for users to keep track of where they are in a document,” stated Roel Vertegaal, director of the Human Media Lab at Queen’s University, when referring to the practical application of the bend user input.OLED_EarlyProduct

Not only does this phone have the unique ability to flex about and receive touch input, but it also sports a “high definition 720p LG Display Flexible OLED touch screen powered by an Android 4.4 ‘KitKat’ board mounted on the side of the display,” meaning: the phone has the same functionality and ability of a current generation high-end smartphone. At the advent of cellphones science was satisfied with having wireless phones the size and weight of a brick, and now advancements have come to the point of designing a slim phone capable of arcing, not for novelty, but for functionality.

While it is exciting to think about another useful feature like bend input, Dr.Vertegaal expressed his opinion on how soon the technology could be seen when he predicted these type of bendable smartphones would not be entering the market for at least another 5 years.

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