Xiaomi's flexible concept phone gets leaked

Xiaomi is getting into anything and everything that can have a computer inside, from smart rice cookers to bikes. That doesn't mean, however, that it's actually done playing around with smartphones. Just like almost every other smartphone OEM, from Samsung to Lenovo, Xiaomi is apparently also interested in a smartphone that can bend over backwards, forwards, or sideways to your heart's content. Yes, Xiaomi is apparently working on flexible smartphones as well, or at least flexible displays, as two leaked photos of a concept phone tries to prove.

Foldable and flexible smartphones and tablets are the holy grail of mobile device makers, whether or not they actually turn out to be practical or useful in the end. Not only is it a design challenge but a manufacturing puzzle as well. The likes of Samsung and LG have already proven how screens can be flexible, solving that part of the puzzle. But a smartphone is made up of more than just a display.

The harder parts of the flexible smartphone problem are actually the harder, that is, more rigid, components. Specifically, those include the circuit boards, chips, and, most especially, the battery. Every working demo of a flexible smartphone display we've seen so far involved some still rigid, non-flexible part for the electronics, be it a panel at the end of a rollable OLED display or even a cylinder, like Samsung's prototype below.

Which is what makes these photos of Xiaomi's supposed concept phone look almost too good to be true. It seems to flex everywhere has no rigid part. At least none that we can see. If Xiaomi has indeed stumbled on the holy grail, it certainly isn't bragging about.

Of course, there is no assurance that these photos are even accurate. Though they definitely don't look like edited images, they could still simply be an elaborate prototype that has absolutely no functionality. Nonetheless, this leak could very well go in Xiaomi's favor, especially considering Samsung, the OEM that is pushing flexible devices the strongest, is currently distracted with other matters.

VIA: GizmoChina