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Brief Published: 6 Mar 2014

Paddle: A Transformable Device


Paddle is a transformable phone concept created by a group of researchers from Belgium’s Hasselt University. Based on the design of a shape-shifting puzzle, the design combines intuitive physical movements with the multipurpose functionality of a touchscreen.

Made from a hinged structure of squares, the construction can be folded and manipulated to suit the digital content, or the optimum ergonomics of a given task. The options for the adaptable form include a phone, game controller or tablet. Currently the prototype relies on projections to display images, but with further development, the team envisages embedded touchscreen displays within the device. 

As highlighted in Design Democracy: Integrate, designs with inherent flexibility and adaptability are redefining the way we live, allowing users increased interaction by adapting to their needs. Look to Macro Trend Elastic Tech for more on the future of flexible displays and shape-shifting handsets, and to Ethical Electronics for insight into how modularity can create adaptable devices.