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Morphee - A Shape Changing Smartphone Prototype

Imagine a smart phone that could change its shape & size as per you mood, requirements and activities performed by you such as – when you play a game, a smart phone named – ‘Moprhee’ changes into a console-like shape by curling its two opposite edges so that it could be better grasped with your two hands.

Morphee is actually a mobile phone (presently in prototype stage) that can automatically change their shapes for better user affordance or better say ‘morph’ into  shapes and that’s why named as Morphees. Watch the video below to get an idea about Morphee prototype and how it work in typical daily life of smartphone user.

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A Morphee is a self-actuated flexible mobile device that address the multiple affordance desired by any applications and transform itself into desired shapes.

The creators of the Morphees – Anne Roudaut, Abhijit Karnik, Markus Lochtefeld, Sriram Subramanian introduced this concept in Conference on Human Factors in Computing Science 2013, which made it viral, they also introduced the term shape resolution, which adds to the existing definitions of screen and touch resolution.

Ideally, for implementation of such easily morphing phones – it has to be as thin and flexible as possible, with no physical switches or dials that could prevent shape deformations. It has several layers of flexible components: the computation circuits, the display and a 2D touch sensor and a shape – shifting layer. The shape – shifting layer morphs (and also senses its deformation), thus affecting the entire assembly. The key point is that the shape – shifting layer is a grid of physical control points, which can be actuated to form the desired shape.

Moreover, it also allows users to download apps to enhance the functionality, for instance the “stress ball app” collapses the device on itself, or the “game app” makes it to adopt a console like shape.

The developing team has teamed up with Department of Computer Science, University of Bristol, UK and German Research Institute for Artificial Intelligence, Germany.

The team has published a research paper on new shape resolution concept and contributed a new metric to define the resolution of an interactive device and work lay down the foundation for creating future high shape resolution devices.

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