Apple patents a round-faced version of its Watch...sort of
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Many Android OEMs are compelled to release their smartwatches with square or squircle faces, thanks to the Apple Watch's rise to benchmark status among such wearables over the years. However, according to MacRumors, the company might go a different way with its signature accessory in the future.
The blog has dug up a patent filed by Apple with the USPTO in 2018. Published in 2020, the document lays claim to a wearable design that, like the Nubia Watch, uses flexible technology to allow the display in question to wrap nearly all the way around the user's wrist, rather than remaining confined to a central rigid module strapped on with a band.
This display apparently does so via a network of the LEDs and electronics as necessary running throughout the device underneath this flexible panel. This might imply a role for cutting-edge bendable battery tech as well; however, it seems Apple has settled for a more conventional power-pack located under the "watchface" zone instead. It bulges outward into a round-ish interface at that point.
On that note, those hoping for OLED in the first generation of any actual hardware based on this patent just might be disappointed: as Apple notes in the document text, the material might be too fragile and susceptible to damage from air or water exposure without traditional protective glass coverings.
Then again, these potential issues might be less pressing over time as display technology matures in the future. In addition, this new development in Apple wearable design could also reduce or even negate bezels in a resultant device. Then again, as the patent has not been approved for that long, it may be some time before this "wraparound Watch" becomes a reality.