Paperfold: A Concept Folding Tablet With Three, Independent Smartphone Screens

The Paperfold is not at all like paper since it can summon a wealth of digital information. It is, however, just as foldable as paper and can behave as one solid piece of paper or three independent pieces. Imagine your tablet being capable of origami tricks while telling you directions!

PaperFold automatically recognizes its shape and changes its graphics to provide different functionality upon shape changes. For example, folding the device into an ultra notebook form factor opens up a keyboard on the bottom screen. Users could use this form factor to type a search, e.g., for an address on Google Maps – displayed on the top screen.

  • By flattening PaperFold’s 3 displays, the user changes views to a Google map that spans all screens.
  • Shaping PaperFold into a convex globe shows the map in Google Earth view.
  • Folding PaperFold into the shape of a 3D building on the map will pick up a Google  SketchUp model of the building and turn the device into an architectural model that can be 3D printed.

The project is a product from Human Media Lab at Queen’s University in Canada. It’s not quite retail-ready, but it’s conceptually more intriguing than Sony’s digital 13″ paper that will cost you around $1,100. What do you think? How often to you want to fold up your tablet and use it as tree screens or two and one keyboard? Share your thoughts in the comment section below.