- Motorola was granted a patent on Wednesday for a phone display that heals if it is cracked.
- It is based on a material that when heated, is able to "reverse some or all of the deformation" that has occurred.
Motorola was granted a patent on Wednesday for a phone display that heals if it is cracked.
The United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) describes a screen made from a "shape memory polymer."
Motorola's description shows a "repair" button on the phone. When pressed, a user taps the area of the screen that is broken, and the repair process begins.
It works because of when heat is applied to the material Motorola suggests should be used, it heals over the cracks.
"Shape memory polymers are stimuli-responsive materials in that a corrective response can be applied as a result to a stimulus," the patent said.
"While different stimuli can be applied to trigger the response, in many cases the stimulus is the application of heat, which leads to an increase in the temperature of the material."
As a result, the screen can "reverse some or all of the deformation and return to its original condition," the patent added.
Of course, the USPTO filing is just a patent and doesn't mean Motorola will be producing phones with this display anytime soon. But it does show that smartphone makers are thinking of new materials and technology to fix common problems like cracked screens.
It's not the first time that self-healing screens have been suggested. In April, researchers at the University of California Riverside said they had created a material that could repair itself.