Samsung, the pioneer of the foldable smartphone industry, could be toying with some unique design ideas for its future foldables. A newly spotted patent application from the company shows a foldable phone with a detachable keyboard. It features a physical QWERTY keyboard that can be attached as needed. The keyboard turns the phone into a mini laptop.

Samsung patents a foldable phone with a detachable keyboard

Spotted by 91Mobiles, Samsung filed this patent application with the China National Intellectual Property Administration (CNIPA) in February 2023. The agency granted the patent at the end of June 2024. It appears to be a design patent for a potential future Galaxy foldable. The device has a fairly large screen with an inward-folding hinge positioned near one of the edges rather than centrally like current foldables.

The idea behind this design is to attach a keyboard to the part with less screen space. This gives you a mini laptop with a full-sized keyboard. The screen space above the keyboard could serve as a trackpad for the mouse. It is a phone version of Samsung’s flagship Android tablets that support a detachable keyboard cover. You can turn the tablet into a laptop when needed. This foldable phone likely drew inspiration from it.

Samsung is already trying hard to refine its foldables with each new generation. The company has the Galaxy Z Fold 6 and Galaxy Z Flip 6 lined up for launch on July 10. The sixth-gen models, particularly the Fold, bring a design evolution that many are saying is a step in the right direction. As the foldable market gets more crowded, these kinds of technological and design evolutions may help companies stand apart.

This product may not be in Samsung’s pipeline just yet

Samsung is the world’s most innovative tech company patent-wise. It has hundreds of thousands of tech patents under its belt. Over the past few months, we have spotted the Korean firm acquiring patents for a rollable phone with a built-in air quality sensor, an electronic face mask with air purification technology, a foldable rollable smartphone, and many other futuristic product designs and tech solutions.

Some of the patented technologies may turn into real-world products, while others will remain on paper. For the time being, this foldable phone with a detachable keyboard seemingly belongs to the latter category. We don’t see Samsung pursuing such a product in the foreseeable future. But a few years down the line, you never know. We will keep you posted on the company’s technological advancements in the foldable industry.

[ For more curated Samsung news, check out the main news page here]

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