Speculation that Samsung has plans to copy Apple has gained steam as a patent application filed by the former reveals a smartphone with a notch.
When the iPhone X had been officially unveiled, it drew mixed reactions from the public as the smartphone came with a noticeable strip above its display. Despite the large, almost bezel-less touch screen, the user's attention goes back to the space that houses its camera and sensors.
Moreover, Andy Rubin's company launched the Essential Phone, another device this time with a smaller cut-out that houses its front-facing camera only.
Digging Up The Details
According to sources, the patent application was filed on March 30 with SIPO, a Chinese patent organization. Credit goes to Mobielkopen, a Dutch phone blog, which first spotted the documents.
The designs included in the documents revealed several models with different main camera placements and types. Yet, all of the designs seem to feature a rectangular notch above the touch screen. A closer inspection likewise reveals the absence of a dedicated Bixby button and fingerprint sensor.
It could probably suggest that the company has finally opted to use an under-display fingerprint sensor. Earlier this year, Synaptics flaunted its new biometric sensor on board a Vivo smartphone at CES 2018.
Here To Stay?
Industry analysts find it hard to believe that manufacturers like Samsung and others encounter difficulties with the notch. Some suggest that it is necessary in order to make bezel-less touch screens possible on smartphones.
However, other models from manufacturers, such as Xiaomi, took a different approach. Instead of a cut-out positioned on the top of the display, the Mi Mix and Mi Mix 2 rely on a thin bezel right below the touch screen.
No matter how much users dislike the design choice, it appears to be integral for manufacturers to come up with borderless smartphones. In fact, it seems to have developed into a trend among most brands such as Asus, OnePlus, LG, and Huawei.
Moreover, Google likewise confirmed that Android P, the platform's next version, will support smartphones that come with a notch.
Experts are not that worried about the latest Samsung patent. Designs submitted with the documents do not exactly guarantee that it will see the light of day. An older patent filed by the company even showcased a smartphone that sported holes on its screen to accommodate the sensors.
It looks like the engineers from different brands are all focused to come up with advancements that could eventually omit the controversial notch.