If you thought the iPhone 5 was ridiculously slender, then you won't believe the specs on three recently unveiled prototypes from Japan Display.

The Japanese company has produced unbelievably slim mock-ups of a 5-inch smartphone display and a 7-inch tablet display, dubbed "Innovation Vehicles." They measure 1 to 1.5 millimeters in boarder thickness, respectively. That would be like owning a mobile phone with a display thinner than a U.S. dime.

Japan Display -- a firm that is the result of a merger between the small- and medium-sized display units of Sony, Toshiba and Hitachi -- has also created a curved 12.2-inch, 1920-by-720-pixel display screen with rounded edges that will supposedly be used as a tech-savvy dashboard in vehicles. (Forget smartphones. We're ready for "smartcars.")

Check out the video below to see examples of these futuristic devices in action:

But how are these phone and tablet displays so incredibly thin? According to the Tokyo-based news site DigInfo TV, integrating the screen's touch panel right into the display eliminated a large part of the bulk.

"[T]he touch-panel is built in, rather than being attached from outside. The structure becomes simple, so it's easy to make the display thin," group manager Kazunori Yamaguchi states in the DigInfo video. "Such a thin display is very sensitive, so we've utilized that to enable writing with a pen. Currently, finger operation is the norm, but we'd like to provide a pen-drawing solution next."

The gadgets also use white pixels in addition to the traditional red, green and blue pixels in order to reduce about 40 percent of power consumption. Sony's website states that "by combining this sophisticated new hardware with advanced algorithms," the display upgrade will allow users to easily peer at their devices in sunlight.

The MIT Technology Review called Japan Display's products "exciting," and expects the prototypes to be "mass-produced within the next year or so." The company launched in April 2012.

[h/t Reddit]

Correction: This article has been modified to clarify that the display of the smartphone and tablet prototypes, not potential smartphones or tablets as a whole, are 1 to 1.5 millimeters thick.

Related on HuffPost:

Loading Slideshow...
  • 'Pouring' File Transfer

    The HP TouchPad's "<a href="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OqSm-pusG-g" target="_hplink">touch to share</a>" feature has nothing on this futuristic Apple patent, which illustrates Apple devices emmulating natural, real-world gestures. In the illustrated example above, an iPhone is tilted over an iPad in order to share files, the way you would do if you were "pouring" the data from one device into the other. <strong>Filed: <a href="http://www.freepatentsonline.com/y2011/0163944.html" target="_hplink">2010</a></strong> Source: <a href="http://www.patentlyapple.com/patently-apple/2011/07/apple-wants-to-beat-hps-webos-sharing-feature-with-something-cooler.html" target="_hplink">Patently Apple</a>

  • Head-Mounted Display

    Back in 2006, Apple filed a patent for a laser-based binocular display unit, which could attach to glasses, helmets, or goggles. In theory, users could plug the device into their iPod and watch videos via the head-mounted apparatus instead of on the tiny iPod display. This wearable system would also let the user remain mobile while enjoying media entertainment. <strong>Filed: <a href="http://www.freepatentsonline.com/y2008/0088937.html" target="_hplink">2006</a></strong> Source: <a href="http://www.patentlyapple.com/patently-apple/2008/04/apple-preparing-a-cool-ipod-visual-head-display-system.html" target="_hplink">Patently Apple</a>

  • Double-Sided iPhone

    This filing makes us wonder what it would be like to have an iPhone with separate displays on its front and back. If each display operated independently, then users could control navigation (or a table of contents) on one side while reading or watching video on the other. <strong>Filed: <a href="http://www.freepatentsonline.com/y2011/0175805.html" target="_hplink">2010</a></strong> Source: <a href="http://www.patentlyapple.com/patently-apple/2011/08/apple-thinks-that-youll-flip-over-a-future-generation-iphone.html" target="_hplink">Patently Apple</a>

  • 3D Holographic Projector

    Many technology companies are betting that 3D is the next big thing, and fortunately for Apple, it already has a few patents to its name. One such example is a desktop display system that projects a 3D hologram, rather than projecting a 2D image onto a flat screen. <strong>Filed: <a href="http://www.freepatentsonline.com/7843449.html" target="_hplink">2006</a> Source: <a href="http://www.patentlyapple.com/patently-apple/2008/03/apple-working-on-3d-holographic-projection-displays.html" target="_hplink">Patently Apple</a>

  • Solar-Powered MacBooks

    Using a reflector that captures light externally, future MacBook owners could enjoy using their laptops outside while harnessing the sun's natural energy to power the device. Apple's patent states that a "translucent surface may also serve to protect the rear face of the display screen from damage". <strong>Filed: <a href="http://www.freepatentsonline.com/y2010/0073791.html" target="_hplink">2008</a></strong> <em>Source: <a href="http://www.patentlyapple.com/patently-apple/2010/03/solar-powered-macbooks-may-be-in-our-future.html" target="_hplink">Patently Apple</a></em>

  • Inductive Chargers

    In one iteration of the system, users wrap earphone cables around a charging tower and place a conductive metal mesh on their device in order to power-up. <strong>Filed: <a href="http://www.freepatentsonline.com/y2011/0188677.html" target="_hplink">2010</a></strong> Source: <a href="http://www.patentlyapple.com/patently-apple/2011/08/apples-inductive-charging-patent-finally-surfaces.html" target="_hplink">Patently Apple</a>

  • Shape-Shifting iPods

    Picture this: an iPod Classic whose touch wheel can morph into a television remote keypad. Currently, input devices use a specific set of operations (such as buttons, keys, touch screens) to command a computer; but, a shape shifting configuration that can physically change interface topography could be a complete game-changer in consumer electronics. <strong>Filed: <a href="http://www.freepatentsonline.com/y2010/0162109.html" target="_hplink">2009</a></strong> Source: <a href="http://www.patentlyapple.com/patently-apple/2010/06/apple-introduces-the-incredible-shape-shifting-device-interface.html" target="_hplink">Patently Apple</a>

  • Liquidmetal Battery Power

    This patent would let Apple use liquidmetal, or "<a href="http://www.freepatentsonline.com/7862957.html" target="_hplink">amorphous alloy</a>" collector plates for internal component fuel cells. <a href="http://www.cultofmac.com/apple-is-granted-its-first-liquidmetal-patent-exclusive/75486" target="_hplink">According to Cult of Mac</a>, this technology "could power mobile phones for more than 30 days without recharging and notebooks for 20 hours or more." <strong>Filed: <a href="http://www.freepatentsonline.com/7862957.html" target="_hplink">2004</a></strong> Source: <a href="http://www.cultofmac.com/apple-is-granted-its-first-liquidmetal-patent-exclusive/75486" target="_hplink">Cult of Mac</a>

  • 3D Gestures

    3D gesturing allows users to rotate objects on the touch screen, gain different perspectives, control color and texture, and more. This technology could be a breakthrough in computer-aided design applications and games. <strong>Filed: <a href="http://www.freepatentsonline.com/y2011/0164029.html" target="_hplink">2010</a></strong> Source: <a href="http://www.patentlyapple.com/patently-apple/2011/07/apples-wild-new-3d-gesturing-is-aimed-at-cad-avatar-creation-more.html" target="_hplink">Patently Apple</a>