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Displays have really evolved over the years. The started off being convex (curving outwards), then morphed into flat screens. Somewhere along the line, having concave (curving inwards) became the trend. For a long time, all projections indicated the foldable display to be the next thing.

But no, Samsung doesn’t think so. The South Korean tech giant thinks stretchable display are way cooler. The company unveiled a 9.1-inch prototype stretchable OLED display, which kinda looks like a trampoline.

If you press the screen from above, it depresses downwards (much like a trampoline does, when a kid jumps on it), then bounces back to its original flat position. Samsung says, “the screen when stretched up or down, even when pressed, has sufficient elasticity to recover.”

Samsung’s technology enables the display to maintain the original image quality up to a maximum depression depth of 12mm when pressed. This display is only a prototype right now, and Samsung remains non-committal as to when exactly they will release the real product.

samsung stretchable display

The display flexes in two directions, unlike foldable display which and only fold in one direction

Although Samsung’s forecasts that they are probably laying down the foundations of a disruptive technology that will find numerous application in the wearables, Internet of Things (IoT), artificial intelligent (AI) applications, and automotive industry.

One plausible application for Samsung’s stretchable screen includes weaving it into an information screen tag in garments for hospital patients. That way, a doctor can instantly read off updates from the patient’s garment, and that information could be updated in an instant. The texture of the screen could be made similar to the fabric, making wearing the garment feel natural.

As for the autonomous cars, the Samsung stretchable display could be stretched across the dashboard, and it would curve naturally with the shape of the interiors. That would fit nicely as compared to installing a large flat display. For AI-robots, the display could be used to make a face, or it can also be used to make keyboards on touchscreen devices with 3D buttons that instantly change from flat to convex shape.

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