Microsoft foldable phone patent
Image Courtesy: FreePatentOnline.com

Microsoft last year surrendered in the smartphone battle and while the future of its mobile push is uncertain, the company is reportedly working on a new mobile-type device behind the closed doors. Codenamed Andromeda, Microsoft’s next Windows 10 device is said to be foldable with mobile features. While Microsoft keeps every little detail secret, the patents have revealed quite a lot about Andromeda.

A new patent titled “Detecting user focus on hinged multi-screen device” talks about a foldable device which can detect the focus of the user. The patent was granted to Microsoft on May 10, 2018.

The patented foldable device features two display, and it can determine a user focus to find out the display which is being viewed by the user.

Microsoft in the patent application explains that the device could also determine the new focus of the user if the original focus changed from the first display to the second display. This would reduce the battery consumption of the device as the display which is not in the viewpoint of the user will be powered off.

The company explains that foldable devices could consume excessive power if one of the screens is facing away from the user but the screen is still powered on. “Currently, multi-screen mobile devices may continue to power that screen even though it is not being viewed by the user, which can lead to excessive power usage,” Microsoft explains one of the biggest problems in such a device.

Foldable phone patent
Image Courtesy: FreePatentOnline.com

Microsoft has already figured out a solution and it could be implemented in Andromeda. “The processor may be configured to detect a current angular orientation between the pair of display devices indicating that the pair of display devices are facing away from each other, determine a current user focus indicating that a first display device of the pair of display devices is being viewed by the user and that a second display device of the pair of display devices is not being viewed by the user,” Microsoft explains.

A smartphone would make little no sense at this point because Microsoft has already discontinued the platform for mobile. Microsoft could reignite its mobile strategy with such a device called Andromeda. The device would offer multiple form factors and possibly including phone capabilities.

More information about Andromeda could possibly surface in the fall of this year when Microsoft will unveil Windows 10 Redstone 5 update. Obviously, there’s no point in getting your hopes too high because the patents not always convert into physical products.

  • Anonymous

    apart from power issue, the dual display also concern to personal privacy when both display is in open-loop.

  • WPJ

    The whole Andromeda story could soon be quite similar to Half-Life 3 story (sans the initial promise of course, but we’ll just assume it was implied).