Is the ultimate phablet on its way?
If you love phablets, the PaperFold phone will blow you away. It really is the ultimate SmartPhone for those who wish their phone had a bigger screen. A Canadian research team from Queen’s created the gadget. They have taken an ordinary phone screen and attached two others either side of it. Hinges allow users to fold the extra screens behind the main screen during normal phone use such as texting or making calls. When more screen space is needed, for example to read a map or watch a video the extra screens can be folded out and used.
Naturally, in its folded state the phone is bulky. To solve this issue the developers give users the option to remove the additional screens.
Independent screen functionality
All three screens can work independently of each other. The idea is that users will be able to have individual applications open on each screen if they want to or have a single application open across the three screens. The PaperFold system automatically recognizes what format the device is in and adjusts the display accordingly. There is the option to use one screen as a keyboard, the second one as the screen and the third as a stand. Fold the device into a convex globe and your map automatically switches from Google Maps to a Google Earth view.
When will it be available?
Currently the PaperFold device is only a prototype. The plan is to develop it into a commercial product, but there is a long way to go. A case that is sturdy enough to hold the screens, but still allow the hinges to operate freely still needs to be developed. Battery life is another potential hurdle. With three power hungry screens, most current mobile phone batteries would not last long. There is no doubt there is demand for such a malleable compact device. It will take time, but this idea is bound to be developed and come to market at some point.