Microsoft is reportedly working with the University of Applied Sciences Upper Austria to create a case that will do more than just protect your phone. The project, called FlexCase, is said to double as an extra touchscreen for your phone and uses the flexibility to navigate parts of the operating system as well.
Piezoelectric circuitry inside the cover can detect presses, pinches and flexes which can then be used as shortcuts or ways to navigate different apps. From Gizmodo:
For the time being, the FlipCase is just a research project that will be presented at the Computer-Human Interaction conference being held in May. (Hence the awkward cables hanging off the bottom of it.) But eventually the technology could make it into our hands as smartphone cases become just as useful as the devices themselves.
It is said that the FlexCase will be shown off in May at the Computer-Human Interaction conference.