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Thinking about the famous saying ("the thinnest iPhone ever"), I started searching thinner phones, and started calculating almost which is the thinnest.

50 years on from now, what could 'The thinnest iPhone ever' mean?

How much thinner can technology get?

Can a phone be like paper in the future?

And what about 200 years in the future?

Probably phones won't exist and we'll use other technologies. But what if phones never disappear?

Is the battery really the biggest problem preventing a thinner phone?

So, how can a phone, like the ones we have in our pocket, transform and get thinner and thinner? Is there a limit to this concept? How could be the thinnest fablet?

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    $\begingroup$ Welcome to Worldbuilding! Could you refine your question a bit more? Are you asking what the smallest a phone could ever be? $\endgroup$
    – Mikey
    Jan 18, 2017 at 17:06
  • $\begingroup$ yes sorry updating $\endgroup$
    – LellisMoon
    Jan 18, 2017 at 17:07
  • $\begingroup$ We can't definitively say what communication technologies may or may not be used in the future. This is speculation, and not really within scope. $\endgroup$
    – AndreiROM
    Jan 18, 2017 at 17:09
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    $\begingroup$ This seems to be very much a "what if" or "consider this" question and not about world building. You can find this community's scope here: worldbuilding.stackexchange.com/help/on-topic $\endgroup$
    – Ranger
    Jan 18, 2017 at 17:10
  • $\begingroup$ @AndreiROM every year more and more phones are made, I only want to know an ipotetical future upgrading like this. $\endgroup$
    – LellisMoon
    Jan 18, 2017 at 17:10

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This video explains what you are asking nicely. Essentially the size of a hand held device is decided by two factors:

  • Ergonomics
  • Internal Components

If a phone is made too small it may be uncomfortable to hold and perhaps too small for usage and visibility for those who are visually challenged. A device must be large/wide enough to be held comfortably by its user.

For the internal components, there are extremely small components that are not much larger than a small molecule as referenced in the video link above. We are always developing smaller computing parts -including batteries- with increasing precision.

A device the width of paper would be impractical, and to be honest I already think devices are thin enough. After all there were complaints about the iPhone 6 being 'bendable'. Any way, long story short, yes it is possible to make thinner devices, but it would be too uncomfortable for the user and will create a sense of fragility with the device.

And to answer if an iPhone will be thinnest forever... well I can't simply because I don't have a crystal ball.

Any way, I hope this helps!

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Yes, the battery is the major problem.

You'll want to investigate technologies around "electronic paper". This is one article where Wikipedia really shines: https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Electronic_paper

The earliest prototypes come from 1974 at XEROX PARC. Check history section of this article: https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Flexible_display

Over time, that tech has improved, but battery keeps being an issue. Wireless charging seems to be the key here, but no one has really made that work yet. Duracell in 2015 was making noises about some sort of efficiency and distance breakthrough, but I haven't seen any follow up.

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  • $\begingroup$ To whomever downvoted this answer: Leaving a comment helps the answerer improve the answer, and write better answers in the future. Consider leaving a comment when you downvote. $\endgroup$
    – Ranger
    Jan 18, 2017 at 18:01

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