When word first got out that handsets with flexible displays were in development, both tech pundits and consumers were skeptical. Given the fragility of the panels, most were worried about durability. Fast-forward to 2024 and foldable screens on devices are now mainstream. If you’re like us and curious about what they’ll think of next, the PHONE ONE concept proposes an intuitive feature.

Prominent technology publications have pointed out the apparent lack of innovation these days. It seems manufacturers just slap on the latest powerful chipsets, upgrade the cameras, tweak the aesthetics a bit, and market it as the next big thing. Perhaps they should look around and maybe draw inspiration from designers like Wayne Lu to come up with something unique.

Instead of taking existing systems and putting a signature spin on things, the PHONE ONE offers its distinct brand of versatility. Modern flagship and mid-range smartphones are generally used for gaming, photography, light productivity, internet browsing, and telecommunications. What this concept hopes to enhance is our tactile interaction.

At first, Lu’s renders of the device just show us a basic candybar form factor with a flat display and a single main camera sensor on the rear. However, an interesting secret this bad boy brings to the table is the rotating three-sided panel on the right flank of the frame. It was not specified if the module is motorized or manually engaged, but it’s clear that each is geared for a specific usage scenario.

The standard control panel includes a volume rocker and a power button. Next is the gaming layout, which sports four shoulder buttons and a single grille in between. Finally, we have the imaging setup with a combination of sliders, buttons, and what looks like a microphone grille for videography. Overall, we think the PHONE ONE concept might be on to something.

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Images courtesy of Wayne Lu