What you need to know
- Apple has published a new patent documenting how multiple devices could be used in one system.
- Applications include joining two devices in a multiple-display configuration much like the Surface Neo.
- There's also a suggestion it could pave the way for a folding Apple device.
A newly-published Apple patent has revealed how users could configure multiple devices to work in a single system using a feature called "joint operating mode".
The patent is titled 'System with multiple electronic devices' and its abstract states:
The devices could be used in multiple orientations and control circuitry would pass on user input, sensor measurements and more between devices.
As some have noted, the patent could also pave the way for Apple to solve the problem of foldable displays and hinges in devices, which have proven to be something of an Achilles heel in the earliest iterations of folding mobile tech. For example, rather than having an iPhone with a hinge or fold to make it smaller, imagine two iPhones joined together that could fold out into a tablet-style form factor.
The patent wording definitely gears this tech towards the coming together of multiple, separate devices rather than a folding iDevice of sorts, but it's still a cool idea. As always, patents are no guarantee that a product of this nature will ever see the light of day.
Stephen Warwick has written about Apple for five years at iMore and previously elsewhere. He covers all of iMore's latest breaking news regarding all of Apple's products and services, both hardware and software. Stephen has interviewed industry experts in a range of fields including finance, litigation, security, and more. He also specializes in curating and reviewing audio hardware and has experience beyond journalism in sound engineering, production, and design.
Before becoming a writer Stephen studied Ancient History at University and also worked at Apple for more than two years. Stephen is also a host on the iMore show, a weekly podcast recorded live that discusses the latest in breaking Apple news, as well as featuring fun trivia about all things Apple.
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