New Microsoft patent details pop-up display for a hinged, foldable device

Image via David Breyer (Twitter)

Rumors regarding Microsoft's fabled foldable device, commonly known as the Surface Andromeda, certainly aren't anything new. Although reports regarding the dubious status of the device did come up a few months ago, the rumor mill has still been churning out a steady stream of news believed to be referring to Andromeda.

A recently published Microsoft patent that details the hinge mechanism of a dual-display foldable device has now emerged on the scene, with numerous references to a 'popup' feature accompanying its hinge assembly. Notably, this isn't the first time information possibly alluding to a hinged display for the device has been uncovered.

Although much of the text in the patent relates to details regarding the intricate hinge mechanism, there are some other interesting bits of information mentioned as well. For example, the graphical user interface, labeled "GUI 208" in FIG. 2C above, shows a text message that reads "Meet you at 5:00 P.M." on the edge of the display. This means that a user would be able to read notifications while the device is in a semi-folded state. Any further action, however, would require opening the device further, which can be done with one hand.

Furthermore, the actual locking mechanism operating on both portions of the device has also been described. This could be featured in the form of a user-controllable lock as shown in the bottom portion of the image above. The primary function of this lock would be to maintain the device in a closed orientation when the user presses upon what can be assumed to be a biometric sensor - although this isn't explicitly mentioned. In any case, releasing the lock while the device is 'closed' would lead to both of its portions conveniently separating themselves by a few degrees so that a pop-up state enforced by the hinge assemblies is achieved. Two alternative lock locations on the sides of the device can be observed as well.

Despite any actual confirmation regarding the status of Surface Andromeda, the continued emergence of what can be surmised as hints toward its existence hardly dampen the intrigue surrounding the device. However, it should be noted that this patent was filed by Microsoft in May, so it's possible that any plans regarding its development - if they existed - have been put on hold or canceled altogether.

Source: PatentScope - WIPO via Windows Central

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