Back at Computex in May 2019 Intel was highly present and active, introducing the “Honeycomb Glacier”, a prototype of a machine that went beyond just a dual screen laptop. It was a machine for multitaskers, gamers, streamers and content creators. And now we have a patent filing for it, showing it was so much more than a prototype.
We see this device as a product that has an “infinitely adjustable secondary screen and Tobii eye tracking”. That lets you switch tasks very fast and it seems that Intel’s prototype already drew some potential partners. My money is on Lenovo, since they’re exactly the kind of company to pull this off. There’s a new video report now from Sean Hollister of The Verge, claiming that the Intel prototype was miles ahead of the Apple Touch Bar on the MacBook Pro.
The “roller clutch” mechanism used here has been praised for letting the user prop up the dual displays at a comfy view angle. Patently Apple is also an important source for this piece, since they discovered what makes it all work. It’s the new Intel patent for “Hinge Angle Detection”, related to the Honeycomb Glacier.
There’s talk of gaps, hinge detection engines and off center lobes. As the first housing rotates relative to the second housing, the distance between the hinge detection engine and the off center lobe piece changes. The gap involved could act as a cavity filled with fluid or some other material, aiding the rotation. In spite of this being an Intel project, there’s a mention of support for an ARM CPU, so all options are kept open.
To be honest this feels more flexible than Lenovo’s own foldable laptop… I see a lot of potential here, but only if the weight is properly distributed.