I always get a kick when I see the stuff tech companies patent and if it ever becomes a real product. The latest patent from RIM spotted by GoRumors describes a seemingly crazy rotating keyboard that switches between a number pad and a keyboard by rotating it with some sort of connector device. The patent language is a bit hard to decipher and the pictures are even worse…
Here is how RIM describes the patent:
In a first aspect, a handheld electronic device, such as a smartphone, has a first device member and a second device member that are connected via a connector. The second device member is rotatable about a rotation axis that is canted relative to an axis of the second device member. As a result, when the second device member is rotated between a first position and a second position, its orientation changes. This may facilitate, for example, switching the handheld electronic device between a text entry mode and a telephone mode.
Check out some of the images attached to the patent below. I can see RIM maybe doing this with software and a rotation axis but the extra buttons would just take up too much space unless it was a dual sided touchscreen… I like to dream a bit.
Thanks Anand for sending this one in!