Samsung might have found a way to remove the unsightly notch and bezels around its screen to deliver what could be a far more appealing visual experience in this year's Galaxy Note 9.
The folks over at Let's Go Digital discovered a patent Samsung filed with the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO) that shows a smartphone with no notch and no bezels. But like those handsets that come with those features, the Galaxy Note 9 still offers an earpiece, microphone, and front-facing cameras.
According to Let's Go Digital, the patent describes how Samsung could effectively cut holes in the screen and place components behind it that would utilize those holes. The screen would come with a hole for the earpiece, for instance, or one that would support a front-facing physical fingerprint sensor. All around, the handset would be covered by its display.
Apple's iPhone X has what some may consider a controversial design. The device eliminates bezels around the screen to put content front and center, but has an unsightly notch at the top where its earpiece and front-facing camera is placed. The notch doesn't stretch across the display, but it distracts from the broader user experience.
Samsung also offers bezels above and below the screen in its Galaxy S8 line and the Galaxy Note 8 that are similarly used to house components. But these areas don't swoop down into or interrupt the display.
Samsung's patent suggests that there's an evolution going on in smartphone design and the iPhone X, Galaxy S8, and Galaxy Note 8 are an interim stop towards a smartphone that has a face entirely covered by a screen.
Looking ahead, it's possible that the technology described in the patent could make its way to the Galaxy Note 9. But it's also worth noting that like other big companies, Samsung files for patents all the time. And it's possible this one will never find its way to a device.