Apple has filed for a patent (number 20210318715) for “electronic devices with curved displays.” It hints at not just future iPhones with curved screens, but also Apple Watches.
Apple has been granted, or filed for, multiple patents for smartphones with a curved display. But this is, as far as I can tell, the first one involving a smartwatch.
About the patent filing
In the patent filing, Apple notes that it can be challenging to form displays for electronic devices. If care is not taken, display performance may be adversely affected when forming displays with surface curvature.
Apple says that there may also a risk that the inactive border areas of a display might be overly large and unsightly. The tech giant’s solution: A display with “planar surfaces and surfaces with curvature.”
Summary of the patent filing
Here’s Apple’s summary of the patent filing: “An electronic device display may have pixels formed from crystalline semiconductor light-emitting diode dies, organic light-emitting diodes, or other pixel structures. The pixels may be formed in a display panel having a single substrate or an array of display panel tiles.
“The display panel has inwardly facing display panel contacts that mate with corresponding outwardly facing interconnect substrate contacts on an interconnect substrate. The interconnect substrate may have areas with compound curvature that are overlapped by the display panel. To enhance flexibility of the interconnect substrate, the interconnect substrate may have flexibility enhancement openings and/or may be formed from a material with a low elastic modulus such as silicone or other elastomeric material.”