IBM is reportedly working on smartwatch that transforms into a tablet, following a new US patent titled “Variable Display Size For an Electronic Display Device”.
The device seeks to fit multiple expanding screens with sliding panels underneath the main screen.
These panels can be removed and connected to expand the main screen into a 4×4 display array, hence allowing the watch to display smartphone-level applications.
The patent’s illustration reveals a smartwatch-like device with a bezel-less screen that is capable of displaying basic information like time, weather and app shortcuts.
The patent doesn’t describe exactly how this technology will work, but it does indicate one way could be to use sliding screen panels stored almost like a deck of cards, which will slide and fold out depending on how large a user wants their screen to be.
The new product looks like a normal smartwatch, with a slightly thicker body and no real edges on the display.
Under the main screen, seven auxiliary screen parts are housed and hidden from view, with all measuring 2×3 inches each.
The patent also goes into detail regarding how applications and widgets would work across different display modules, though it doesn’t cover how these displays would connect and disconnect.