Apple has recently filed for a patent (number 20200380916) that suggests it wants to make its iPhone, iPad, and Mac display bezel-less. The patent filing is titled “optical system and method to mimic zero-border display.”
Apple looking for alternative technologies to help reduce bezels by hiding control circuitry
Here’s what the tech giant said in its patent application:
“At or near the borders of a device, pixel pitch between adjacent pixels may be increased such that overall pixel placement may be provided closer to a border of a display of a device. In one embodiment, pixel drive circuitry may be located in the spacing between adjacent pixels.
Additionally, various optical systems and techniques may be utilised to provide an appearance of a lack of a border around the display such as decreasing the size of border pixels, overdriving the border pixels, or utilising a light pipe on a surface above the border pixels,”
Apple wants to divide the surface on the front of the device into three areas: active pixel area, passive pixel area, and the area without pixels. The split into active and passive pixels will make it possible to increase the visible surface of the display.
Control circuits of the individual pixels can be placed In the passive pixel area at the edges of the screen. Usually, they are hidden in the edges of the display, allowing them to be placed directly in the display.
“The light pipe may function to transport or distribute light from the pixel array across, for example, the drive circuitry area… to generate a perceived active area,” says Apple.
Second, the pixels in this area could be spaced further apart than on the rest of the display. This would make it possible to have display pixels without covering up all of the “drive circuitry.”
“In this manner the pixel pitch (i.e., the distance between pixels) at the border area… is increased relative to the pixel pitch of the pixels in the active area,” says the tech giant. “That is, red, green, and blue pixels are interspersed drive circuitry elements.”