Samsung is yet to make any of its smart speakers available for sale, but the company has some exciting ideas to make such devices more useful. Going by a patent filed by the South Korean electronics giant, it has plans to cover cylindrical smart speakers with rollable displays.
The company has acquired a patent for an audio accessory with the Korean Intellectual Property Rights Information Service (KIPRIS). Supporting documents show a cylindrical-shaped speaker which can be fully covered using a rollable screen. When needed, the screen can be fully unfurled mechanically using its supporting arms.
If such a device hits the market, you can use it as a smart speaker and a smart screen, depending on the need. When the screen is rolled, it won’t take up much space in your living room. When it is opened, you can watch videos, read the news, see important updates, control Bixby-supported smart home products with the touchscreen, and more.
It can automatically (or manually) switch from a Google Home-like smart speaker to a Google Nest Hub-like smart display, acting as a two-in-one device. It is, of course, just a patent, and there’s no guarantee that such a device will ever hit the market. You can have a look at the proposed design of a possible Bixby-powered speaker in the image below.
The Bixby-powered Galaxy Home was unveiled back in 2018, but it hasn’t hit store shelves yet. A smaller version of the speaker, the Galaxy Home Mini, was unveiled last year. It is slated to be released in the next few weeks. Samsung may launch it alongside the Galaxy S20 and the Galaxy Z Flip during the Unpacked 2020 event.