We have already seen smartphone makers like Samsung, Huawei, Motorola and more enter the foldable smartphone segment. Xiaomi showcased a foldable phone prototype last year, but hasn’t launched a commercial product yet. The company has filed numerous patents to demonstrate various foldable implementations, including a clamshell design and a tri-folding display. Pricebaba has now spotted a new patent submitted by Xiaomi on CNIPA, China’s National Intellectual Property Administration. From the looks of it, the smartphone seems to be a toned-down version of the foldable phone with five pop-up selfie cameras that Xiaomi patented last year.
The new patent seems to feature a similar form factor to the one spotted last year, with one notable difference. Instead of five pop-up selfie cameras, this time we have a more realistic single camera module. The design also suggests that the upcoming Xiaomi smartphone will feature an outward folding display, like the one on the Huawei Mate X and Mate Xs. Just like the older patent, the single elevating camera module will become the rear or front shooter depending on the way you hold the phone.
The patent that was published today also shows the presence of a USB Type-C port at the bottom. There’s also a single physical button on the side, which could be for volume. The smartphone will likely have an in-display fingerprint scanner for security.
As of now, Xiaomi has only patented the new design, and this doesn’t mean that the brand will necessarily use it on a commercial product.