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Apple recently got awarded a patent that hints at some new changes to the upcoming iPhone 8, and future iPhones to follow.
The ideas presented do include a bezel free phone, or a full face” display that sees the top and bottom bezel frame nixed entirely. This includes components such as the TouchID and front-facing camera, will be hidden under a pixel-filled pane of glass. The patent details that Apple might utilize small openings (or large, in the case of the fingerprint sensor) within the screen panel to fit in the hardware, either to give visual access to the user or to allow for unhindered signal transmission. This concept will not only tuck the components out of sight, but will also result in a cleaner, smoother design, similar to Xiaomi's Mi Mix.
The patent also points at grouping these holes into a larger window of sorts, that can be used for AR, complete with a HUD inside. The use can either be AR, or a camera viewfinder as well.Since Apple claims to be able to render images within the viewing window, the possibilities for an AR-compatible iPhone do seem quite favorable.
Other details on the patent are not unheard of. For example, Synaptics detailed its FS9100 fingerprint sensor at the tail end of 2016 that is able to gather biometric readings hidden under 1mm of glass. Though, having it put to use in an Apple device would surely popularize the tech moving forward. We still dont know if the HUD window will work together with the bezel free design, but it would be a new design altogether.
We shall know more about this, once Apple makes an official announcement. However, note that not all patent ideas make it to final production.