Canadian researchers unveil bendy smartphone prototype called ‘ReFlex’

Canadian researchers unveil bendy smartphone prototype called ‘ReFlex’

At the Tangible Embedded and Embodied Interaction conference held in The Netherlands on Wednesday, Canadian researchers from Queen’s University Human Media Lab introduced a lightweight and bendy smartphone prototype called ‘ReFlex.’

The ReFlex smartphone prototype is an Android-powered device, featuring LG’s bendable OLED display which underscores the same technology as that used in bendable TVs. The handset has the capability to detect the degree to which it has been bent; and is equipped with both multitouch input and bend sensors.

The ReFlex handset -- which is essentially a break-resistant device -- is sturdy enough to withstand a bending of up to 40 degrees. Most of the flexibility of the handset is at its center; with its ends being somewhat semi-rigid.

Revealing that the ReFlex smartphone prototype, powered by Android OS version 4.4 ‘KitKat,’ is capable of triggering tactile feedback resulting from specific use-case scenarios, Roel Vertegaal – Director of the Human Media Lab – said in a press release that the handset “represents a completely new way of physical interaction with flexible smartphones.”

Further adding that the ReFlex smartphone prototype has been created with the help of off-the-shelf components, Vertegaal said: “The phone is mass produceable as it is today.”