[Image above] ReFlex, a prototype for a flexible smartphone from researchers at Queen’s University in Ontario, Canada. Credit: Human Media Lab; YouTube
From smaller to bigger to thinner to stronger, our most prized technological possession—the smartphone—continues its evolution.
Tech companies have promised more flexible-yet-durable electronic displays in the past, but a true bendable, handheld electronic gadget has yet to hit the market.
But these are changing times. Enter: The ReFlex, a prototype for a flexible smartphone from researchers at Queen’s University in Ontario, Canada.
“Bending a book cover to flip pages provides visual, tactile, and kinesthetic feedback about navigation speed. Rigid phones don’t support these cues, causing users to lose track,” explains a video about the research, produced by Queen’s University’s Human Media Lab.
ReFlex consists of a high-res flexible OLED display that bends sensors and haptic feedback motors mounted to its back. An Android 4.4 board secured to the non-flexible part of the device provides power.
Plus, the device is incredibly lightweight and durable. Check out the video below to see this prototype flex its stuff.
Credit: Queen’s University Human Media Lab; YouTube
Interested in delving deeper into the research? Download the research team’s open-access paper, “ReFlex: A flexible smartphone with active haptic feedback for bend input.”