It’s no secret that the smartphone industry — and, particularly, the Android ecosystem — is often dominated by a “monkey see, monkey do” design philosophy.
Few companies epitomize that better than Samsung, who has long been accused of copying Apple’s flagship handsets whenever it could. If you don’t think that’s true, just consider this 132-page internal Samsung document that’s essentially a guide on how to make the Galaxy more like an iPhone.
Now, it seems, Samsung is at it again with another very specific iPhone-style design element. And it’s one that will probably make hardcore Galaxy fans really, really upset. Yes, it’s the “notch.”
A Samsung patent application, which was made public last month but only recently spotted by Dutch blog Mobielkopen, basically confirms that the South Korean tech giant is at least considering an iPhone X copycat with a display notch.
Patent stories are usually laden with technical jargon and complex details, but there’s no need to write about the intricacies of the application. The patent’s figures speak for themselves.
The patent was filed with the State Intellectual Property Office, basically China’s version of the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office. It was first filed back in 2016 — about a year prior to the iPhone X’s release. But consider that Samsung manufactured the OLED panels for the flagship iPhone and was probably well-aware of the “notch” long before it was leaked to the general public.
Samsung isn’t alone in shamelessly copying the iPhone X’s sensor notch. A plethora of Android makers have followed Apple’s lead by including a notch in their latest flagships. (Many of which serve no purpose since those devices don’t have the advanced 3D sensors that the iPhone X does.)
Like the removal of the headphone jack, it might be controversial now. But the fact that the largest smartphone manufacturer in the world is toying with the idea is evidence enough that the design has the potential to become commonplace.
Many Samsung fans undoubtedly hate the notch. A lot. But until now, they probably thought they were safe from it. With Samsung on board, we might very well be entering the era of the notched display.