One of the very very… very few thing that we can all agree on is that we hate bezels. A necessary evil that surrounds our beautiful radiant screens, framing and protecting them. With tablets especially, bezels also provide an area to place our fingers to avoid accidental interactions with the screen and keep greasy pizza sauce off the glass surface. The former, software can sometimes help with, the latter requires some hygiene and self control. Microsoft maybe working on a third option for it’s up upcoming Surface Pro 4. A screen that automatically adjusts itself based on how you’re using it.
Being spoiled by something like Dell’s XPS 13, you would wince in disgust upon returning to a laptop with thick ugly bezels.
Practically edge-less displays are not only beautiful to look at and work on, they allow manufacturers to cram larger screens into smaller and lighter overall packages. So a 15″ Laptop can occupy almost the same area in your bag as a 13″ one. Costs aside, a small bezel on a laptop is a no-brainer. On tablets however, edge-to-edge displays present a number of problems: holding them securely, avoiding unintended screen contact and for some, protective cases that wrap around the device. If the rumors are true (and as usual it is a big “if”), Microsoft’s Surface Pro 4, set to be announced this week, may tackle that problem in a rather unique way. The Surface line has always been a device of multiple functions; most commonly a tablet and a laptop. Since the introduction of Windows 10, convertibles have been able to switch between laptop and tablet modes depending mostly on the position of the screen and the keyboard.
Using that logic, in laptop mode, presumably paired with a keyboard, the screen would extend to cover nearly the entire front-facing area, displaying approximately 14″ of content. Once switched over to tablet mode, the screen would shrink down to under 12″ providing an area to rest your hands and fingers. Obviously the physical screen would remain the same size in all cases, merely the display area would change; yes you still need to wash your hands (using soap and water) to keep your Surface Pro clean.
This is not exactly a fresh idea as an ill-fated product from Intel and Artefact, the “North Cape” attempted the same concept in 2013.
However, with Microsoft’s backing, this has a more pragmatic chance of making it into consumer hands. It will also be interesting to see if the technology would trickle down to the less powerful, but more affordable Surface, since it is more likely to be used as a content-absorbing tablet than the the more work-focused Pro model.
What do you guys think if this idea? Useful or gimmicky? Sound off in the comments or on social media. Even if you’re a no-good, bezel-loving, low life, we would still love to hear from you.