Chinese OEMs such as Oppo, Vivo, and Xiaomi have never shied away from experimenting with bold design choices for their devices. As a result, we got the world’s first pop-up camera mechanism on the Vivo Nex. Oppo’s latest patent filing, however, shows us the company’s take on how a stylus should look with a phone.
Letsgodigital stumbled upon a patent that showcases a phone with a unique-looking stylus. It’s interesting to see a nearly ten-year-old tech come back into the mainstream. Nobody other than Samsung seems to have given much thought to a stylus-operable phone. This year, on the other hand, we got not one, but two such devices in the form of the Galaxy Note 10 Lite and the Moto G Stylus.
Unlike the aforementioned phones, the Oppo's upcoming phone will not come with a pit to house a stylus. According to the listing, it will also double up as a microphone that can be used to make and receive calls. It'll be battery powered and connect to the phone via Bluetooth LE, much like the Galaxy Note 10's S Pen. This stylus also appears to be significantly larger than anything we've seen before, presumably to house a battery. Unlike conventional solutions, this one requires a lot more juice, so a larger battery is not only justified but also essential. There also appear to be two buttons on the stylus; presumably to control the volume during phone calls.
We've already seen Samsung try something like this way back in 2012 with the HM5100 Bluetooth S Pen for the 2014 edition of the Galaxy Note 10.1 tablet. The bigger (and more pressing) question here is; why would anyone want this? Bluetooth headphones have come a long way and offer a wide range of functionalities other than making and receiving calls. It might save you the trouble of not holding up a phone to your year, but that's about it.
Do bear in mind that this is a patent listing, and such a device might not see the light of day for years. Companies often patent designs that it intends to use years later. It is not uncommon for such designs to remain unused either. Perhaps Oppo will shed some light on this tech at its MWC 2020 presentation later in the month.