Apple patent involves future iPhones and (maybe) iPads with smaller bezels that offer devices with displays of the same size as current models in smaller form factors. It’s expected that 2018 iPhones will ship in 5.8- and 6.5-inch sizes in OLED, with a lower-priced ($700-$800) 6.1-inch device with an LCD screen coming, as well.
OLED is made up of many tiny LEDs, each emitting their own light and colors. They don’t require an “always on” backlight, as each LED can be on or off as needed, and emitting the right kind of light needed to create the images you’re seeing. Supporters of the technology praise its high contrast/deep blacks and potential thickness and power consumption advantages.
Here’s Apple’s summary of the invention: “An active matrix display backplane for organic light emitting diode (OLED) displays commonly includes a gate driver in panel (GIP) region and a pixel area region. For example, the GIP region may include gate driver circuitry connected to gate lines that run horizontally through the pixel area region, with each gate line corresponding a respective row of the display pixels. The GIP is commonly located on the left or right side of the display panel, or on both sides. “
Of course, Apple files for — and is granted — lots of patents by the U.S. Patent & Trademark Office. Many are for inventions that never see the light of day. However, you never can tell which ones will materialize in a real product.