Reasearchers develop a flexible smartphone that you bend to operate

We’ve heard news stories about flexible devices for years now, right from the early days of e-ink prototypes, but nothing has really caught our imagination until now. Researchers from Queens University have just come pretty darn close, with a flexible smartphone design.

The ReFlex is a prototype that uses a 720p flexible LG OLED display with bend sensors and haptic feedback bumpers. Running on Android 4.4 with custom drivers built for the experiment, the result is a smartphone that you bend to control, instead of using the touchscreen.

The demo places a virtual book on the screen, similar to what you might have in your Kindle app (or similar readers). However, instead of touching a button or swiping to have the next page slide into place, you can grip the edges of the phone and twist it, just like you might a paperback. Do this, and you’re rewarded with a realistic view of the pages flipping by. And thanks to the haptic feedback, you’ll feel those pages brush past your fingers too.
Check out the video below to get a real feel for it. And with a prototype this smooth already in place, it might only be a matter of time before smartphone bend tests are a thing of the past.

Posted by on February 18, 2016. Filed under Technology. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. Both comments and pings are currently closed.