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Samsung Galaxy S11: you've never seen anything like this extendable design

In the immortal words of Alan Partridge: "Yes, it's an extender!"

(Image: © LetsGoDigital)

Samsung wants to stay ahead of the competition with the design of its flagship smartphones. First up, the Seoul-based company will unveil its Galaxy Note 10 early next month with a triple-camera design, curved edge-to-edge Infinity-O display, and a next-generation S Pen stylus.

Looking to next year, Samsung is widely-rumoured to launch a successor to its Galaxy Fold, as well as a follow-up to the Samsung Galaxy S10 series. It's unclear what the company has planned just yet, but an intriguing new patent might have revealed an early look at the all-new design.

The team at technology blog LetsGoDigital have unearthed a new patent filed with the Korean Intellectual Property Office, or KIPO. It describes a smartphone with an expandable and retractable display.

The screen can be slowly pulled from the right hand-side of the handset to extend the OLED by up to 50%. Unfortunately, the patent, which was published on June 24 2019, does not specify how this is achieved.

(Image: © LetsGoDigital)
(Image: © LetsGoDigital)
(Image: © LetsGoDigital)

The Samsung Galaxy Fold proves that Samsung is capable of producing flexible screens, albeit not always with a durable design. However, it's not clear whether this patented design will leverage a foldable screen, or something new.

According to LetsGoDigital, we could see this ambitious new retractable design as an addition to the Galaxy S11 range – like the Galaxy S10 5G and Galaxy S10e, which were added to the line-up this year. It suggests the name Galaxy S11 Max.

Of course, it's possible the phone could be sold under the Galaxy Fold brand name instead. Although it uses a different mechanism it scratches the same itch by providing two very different screen sizes in a single device, with the ability to quickly switch between the two depending on how you want to use the handset.

As always, multi-national companies like Samsung patent a slew of different technologies and designs – not all of these leave the R&D department in finalised products. It's possible we'll never see this one on shelves worldwide.

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