Bringing the "just a screen" form factor a step closer to life.
Xiaomi has announced a new concept phone with a four-sided curved ‘waterfall’ display without any ports or buttons. While surely not as futuristic as the Mi Mix Alpha, the concept phone – which does not have a name yet – brings the “just a screen form factor a step closer to life.”
Xiaomi revealed the ‘challenges’ that went behind making this one-of-its kind smartphone display possible in a blog post. Bending the screen on two sides is something that a lot of smartphone makers have achieved. Xiaomi has been able to go the extra mile and curve the top and bottom ends too – which is a first for any smartphone (though, just be clear, the technology is not ready for prime-time yet).
Come take a closer look at our first #QuadCurvedWaterfallDisplay concept smartphone, and witness the revolution in glass screen manufacturing and bonding. #InnovationForEveryone pic.twitter.com/cMFKm6LbiM
— Xiaomi (@Xiaomi) February 5, 2021
“Polishing a piece of such hyper-curved glass with a deep 88-degree bend on four sides requires self-developed glass processing equipment, hot bending under 800-degree Celsius high temperature and pressure, four different polishing tools and up to more than ten complex polishing procedures,” Xiaomi said, adding, “behind such a piece of glass are thousands of attempts.”
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Rounding off the package are pressure-sensitive touch sensors, piezoelectric ceramics, under-display cameras, wireless charging, and eSIM support. In all, 46 self-developed patented technologies went behind making this concept phone though whether or not, Xiaomi will bring it to the market anytime soon is not immediately clear.
Xiaomi launched a phone called the Mi Mix Alpha in 2019. It had a “surround screen” that started at one end, wrapped around one side, and then met a vertically aligned strip on the back. The unique setup entailed a screen-to-body ratio of a whopping 180 per cent. The phone traded physical side controls with touch-sensitive alternatives. Xiaomi sold limited number of Mi Mix Alpha phones in China and later, showcased it in India (though the phone was never sold in India).