This design patent got submitted back at the end of July last year, but it got approved today. This is a rather interesting smartphone, though it's similar to a couple of other devices we've seen in the market already.
Smartphones with multiple displays never took off
Smartphones with two displays never really took off. They're still kind of niche products. If a company like Xiaomi ends up making one, that may help the process move forward.
If you take a look at the provided sketches below, you'll notice this phone has extremely thin bezels. It has a 'chin' below the display, but it's quite thin. Its volume up, down, and power / lock buttons are on the right, while there's another physical button on the left.
The device includes a regular earpiece, and does not have a selfie camera. There's no need for one, as it has a secondary display on the back, and can use those cameras for selfies and video calls.
Based on the provided renders, that back display is also colored. You can see some of its UI here as well. That display is also quite large, it takes the vast majority of the phone's back.
One has to wonder what are the advantages of such a phone, though. Other than the fact you're getting a display on the back for the camera viewfinder, so that you don't have to include a front-facing camera, this secondary display is not all that useful, presuming it's a regular display.
Including an e-ink display on the back may have some benefit, of course, but they're losing a proper viewfinder for the camera. All in all, there's a reason why such phones did not become widespread yet.
It would be interesting to see a phone from Xiaomi that has two displays
The design Xiaomi patented is just that… a patent. This patent does not have to indicate this design will become a reality, of course, but it may suggest it, we'll see.
The Nubia Z20 is a good example of a phone with two displays. This handset got announced back in August last year, and is quite powerful, actually.
It has a display similar to the one that is shown in this patent, in fact. It's a color display that takes up most of the phone's back. The whole device looks quite sleek, in fact.
It remains to be seen if Xiaomi will announce this phone with two displays, or not. It would be interesting to see the company's take on it, though.