How do you make a phone with slim borders around the display, but still leave room for the earpiece, camera, and ambient light sensor?

Apple, Essential, and a bunch of other companies have opted for display cut-outs, which has the screen wrap around the camera and sensor. Samsung and Google have just opted to make the top and bottom bezels slimmer, but still leave them generally in place. And Chinese phone maker Vivo has the craziest solution we’ve seen so far, with a slim-bezeled phone that has a pop-up camera.

But Chinese phone maker Doogee has another idea: a phone with a display that slides down to reveal the camera, earpiece, and other components.

The Doogee Mix 4 isn’t available for purchase yet, and it’s not even really a working phone yet. But YouTuber Mrwhosetheboss got his hands on a prototype that shows off the design, and it looks like an interesting solution.

Basically the phone has a 5.99 inch AMOLED display with virtually no bezels around the top, bottom, or sides. That’s because most of the phone’s electronic components are packed into the back of the device.

In order to reveal the camera, earpiece, and sensors you slide the display downward. It’s possible that Doogee could offer software that allows this motion to automatically open the camera app, answer a phone call, or open the phone dialer. But since we’re just looking at a design prototype, it’s unclear how the final software will work.

The picture Doogee slapped on the front of the phone does show a fingerprint icon though, suggesting that the final product could have an in-display fingerprint sensor.

There are dual cameras on the back of the phone, and volume and power buttons on the side. The Doogee Mix 4 is about 11mm thick, which makes it a bit chunky by modern smartphone standards, but still easily pocketable, especially when you consider that the slim bezels make this one of the smallest 6 inch phones you’re likely to see.

We’ve seen phones with sliding parts in the past, but usually the idea is to hide a keyboard when it’s not in use. This is the first time I’ve seen a phone with a sliding display designed to hide the camera.

Mrwhosetheboss says he expected the Doogee Mix 4 to go on sale toward the end of 2018… about 6 months after the company releases the Mix 3, which it hasn’t done yet. He also says it’s expected to feature an unspecified Qualcomm Snapdragon processor and sell for around $300, suggesting that despite the unusual design, this phone could ship with mid-range specs.

Doogee typically focuses on the budget smartphone space, but this wouldn’t be the first time the company was a bit ahead of the curve. In 2015 the company was one of the first to launch a phone with both 4GB of RAM and a 2560 x 1440 pixel display.

via Android Police



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11 replies on “Doogee Mix 4 prototype hides the camera with a sliding display rather than bezels (or a notch)”

  1. I want a phone with enough top and bottom to house a speaker in each, mic in the bottom, and a camera up top. I see no reason for any real estate on the sides.

  2. Honestly the best idea yet for a true bezeleas phone imo. You can cram so much screen sze into this design without making it too absurd in size. 6.5 inch screen in a phone of this design = heaven for heavy users.

  3. I may be in the minority that doesn’t mind bezels to help house cameras (with built-in lens cover), hardware buttons, etc. Bezels are also a nice “feature” to have when using 3rd-party kickstands and similar. I especially don’t mind them on the left/right sides in portrait mode so that my meaty fingers don’t accidentally touch the screen.

    Despise the notch – computing starts with an unobtrusive and clear screen – so the Doogee solution *in comparison* seems much better.

    1. I’m beginning to come around to your line of thinking. My Honor 7X(Mate SE actually) has almost non existent bezels on the sides and I’m constantly accidentally pausing, fast forwarding, etc videos when I watch them in bed in landscape because my fingertips wrap around and brush the screen ever slightly. I love the way the device looks, but that is a big con.

      1. +1 on larger side bezels. I don’t know what the point is. Too easy to accidentally do a screen press when trying to hold phones with such slim bezels.

  4. How do you put something like this in a case? This is an interesting idea…even if it isn’t original. It would be awesome if Brad got a review unit but I am guessing the odds are low. Doubtful it will ever come to the USA.

    1. Maybe they could release a rugged version for those worried about breaking it.

      But I never added an external protection to my phones, so I’m not sure if it would be satisfying for everyone.

  5. I like the security benefits of covering cameras. Sure beats removing the battery.

  6. This would be kind of cool if they had packed screen vibration tech into the screen for the earpiece. It would have added to the screen thickness a bit, but it’d be more useful than having to slide it open to answer a call like it’s 2007. I’m betting screen issues would be pretty common on a set up like this since the ribbon in slider phones was often the most common point of failure because of the constant movement. Props to them for trying something new(or old school), I guess.

  7. Now we begin the return to slider phones but instead of revealing a physical keyboard, they reveal the phone part of the smart phone.

    1. I mean, if it starts becoming a trend to have these sliding mechanisms again then I’m all for it.

      This shows the front facing cam which is cool enough; I could imagine they might make it so when you slide the camera out the Camera app opens automatically in selfie mode.

      Or instead, it could hide some physical buttons for media controls or f

      But also idk, maybe making something like the priv would become cheaper if more companies start using sliding mechanisms again.

      Basically what I’m saying is I want a touch screen bezelless version of my old Nokia N95.

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