LG has been granted a notebook patent by the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO), which shows a concept design for a laptop with multiple displays. The concept laptop, according to the patent, has a keyboard that is significantly smaller than traditional laptop keyboards but is flanked on either side by two displays.
According to the LG notebook patent filing, the displays appear to be multifunctional. “This design is a laptop computer with functional touchpads on both sides of the keyboard,” according to the WIPO patent, “shows the touchpads on the subject design being converted to a numeric keypad and a functional pad that can adjust the volume, screen brightness, and other functions; the letters, numbers, and icons on the functional touchpads, as well as the broken lines, indicate portions of the article that do not form part of the claimed design.”
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The two displays flanking the keyboard could be multi-functional; the one on the right shows a panel that can function as both a trackpad and a numeric keypad. Meanwhile, the one on the left could be used for a variety of functions, including adjusting the laptop’s brightness and volume levels, among other things.
The design leaves a large section of the laptop’s base empty, where a traditional laptop keyboard would be. It’s unclear what LG plans to do with this space; it could be used to improve laptop speakers or add a second wide-screen display, similar to Asus’ ‘Duo’ two-screen laptops. Other scenarios, such as incorporating eye-tracking mechanisms, might be appropriate as well.
The multi-screen laptop design is different from Asus’s dual-display laptop design. The laptop will have a wider display with a shorter height but a longer base length, according to LG’s patent, allowing it to accommodate two displays on either side of the keyboard. However, whether such an implementation would result in a crowded layout remains to be seen.