Apple patent roundup: Siri and flexible displays

The company files a 51-page application for its Siri technology, as well as filing for a patent related to "electronic devices with flexible displays."


Apple has been on a patent tear as of late , and it doesn't appear the company will slow down anytime soon.

The iPhone maker has filed for a patent related to "electronic devices with flexible displays." According to the filing, which was first discovered by Unwired View, it'll allow for mobile devices to feature flexible screens that can match the case design of a respective device.

The patent application, published today, describes a method by which Apple could place a speaker or microphone under the screen. In addition, a keyboard could be modified to handle the concave or convex display.

Cool tech aside, it's not clear whether the flexible display would be integrated into a mobile device. Apple's design images seem to show a mockup of an iPhone with a concave display, home button, and earpiece. It's not clear, though, whether the technology will ever come to the handset. Like other companies, Apple patents all kinds of inventions and many of them don't ever launch.

That stands in stark contrast to another Apple patent application published today. According to AppleInsider, which was first to discover "Intelligent Automated Assistant," Apple has handed over to the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office a 51-page application for its Siri technology.

The patent is much of what you'd expect, featuring a full discussion on Siri's functionality. According to AppleInsider, a key piece of the patent application is that users can speak conversationally with Siri, rather than be forced to say only certain commands.

Interestingly, Apple's patent application includes images of the first version of Siri, when it was a third-party program owned by Siri, Inc.

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About the author

Don Reisinger is a technology columnist who has covered everything from HDTVs to computers to Flowbee Haircut Systems. Besides his work with CNET, Don's work has been featured in a variety of other publications including PC World and a host of Ziff-Davis publications.



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