A new Surface Pro might be on the horizon, but Microsoft is busy experimenting with new ideas for unique keyboard attachments.
One such concept out of the Microsoft Applied Sciences Group today shows a cover that integrates a touch-sensitive e-ink display built into the keyboard area.
Called the ‘DisplayCover.’ it sports a physical keyboard and a ultra-thin e-ink display with 1280 x 305 pixels used to display live tiles below the screen without draining battery life.
The idea is that it could help extend available screen space on smaller devices — perhaps like the smaller Surface 3 — and add a new interaction paradigm. The device allows gesture interactions directly on the e-ink display, such as zoom, pan and rotate.
I’d love to see a e-ink display on the opposite side of the cover, so that the Surface can keep calendar, messages and other information up to date on live tiles without draining the battery.
It’s unlikely the concept will make it to store shelves any time soon, but it’s a fun look at what Microsoft’s up to behind the scenes.