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Lenovo’s new smartphone will be nothing but screen on the front

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Could Lenovo be the first company to launch a phone that literally has nothing on its front side except the screen? Judging by a sketch of the upcoming Lenovo Z5, posted on Weibo by Lenovo VP Chang Cheng (unearthed by CNET), it’s quite possible. 

Obviously, the sketch may not be exactly what the final version looks like, but Cheng mentions “four technological breakthroughs” and “18 patented technologies,” which could refer to all the new tech that’s needed to somehow hide or move the selfie camera, speaker and sensors typically placed at the top of the phone’s front side. 

Furthermore, in an earlier teaser for the Lenovo Z5, Cheng posted a partial image of the phone and said it will have a 95% screen-to-body ratio. For context, the iPhone X has an 82.9% screen-to-body ratio, and the Essential PH-1 has an 84.9% screen-to-body ratio. 

The trend among current flagships is to do away with the front fingerprint sensor (either by switching to face recognition, like iPhone X, or moving it to the back of the phone) and to house the front camera and sensors into a “notch” on top of the phone’s face. 

Lenovo Z5

Lenovo Z5

However, we’ve seen several prototypes that go even further; for example, Vivo’s Apex concept phone has a staggering 98% screen-to-body ratio. To achieve that, it has a selfie camera that rises from the top of the phone, an under-the-display fingerprint scanner and its entire display doubles as a speaker. 

There’s no word on when Lenovo might launch the Z5, or even if it’s a mass-market device or just a concept. But we’re excited for a future where…all phones look exactly alike?

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