Over the weekend we posted a report asking the question "Could Apple use Triboelectric Technology in Future iDevices?" We noted in that report that Apple's current work on energy harvesting was focused in the area of solar cells. The timing of that report was perfect as today we're learning that solar energy harvesting will likely make it to market ahead of triboelectric technology. It's being reported that Kyocera may be the first to test out a new touch display from Sunpartner Technologies that integrates photovoltaic charging capability to a touchscreen. In the company's promotional video about "Next Generation Screens equipped with Wysips" technology they clearly show the image of an iPhone as one of these future devices. Whether Apple will actually use this technology in the future is unknown at this time and more interestingly, we wonder if Apple Legal will force Sunpartner Technologies to remove the iPhone imagery from their marketing materials.
On June 5, 2014, the US Patent & Trademark Office published a patent application from Apple that reveals ongoing work on solar cell technology. In Apple's latest invention they advance display technology that integrates solar cell ambient light sensors that may one day work with an iPhone, iPad, iWatch, a Mac, television or a vehicle.
The US Patent and Trademark Office officially published a series of 49 newly granted patents for Apple Inc. today. In this particular report we cover the iPhone's Integrated Touch technology, possible future solar assemblies for the iPhone and the integration of various sensors and the Home Button in iDevices. Apple was also granted their third Siri related patent in 2014 and four design patents. We wrap up this week's granted patent report with our traditional listing of the remaining granted patents that were issued to Apple today.
The US Patent and Trademark Office officially published a series of 31 newly granted patents for Apple Inc. today. In this particular report we focus on a single invention that covers future devices that could incorporate several integrated technologies including smart glass or electrochromic glass, backside display cover touch controls and photovoltaic cells that could add a power boost to many devices such as a MacBook or iPad. According to a new research report published today, notebooks and Ultrabooks with built-in LTE connectivity will be a new product category that will gain a lot of traction over the next few years as LTE expands into China and other markets around the globe.
On October 31, 2013, the US Patent & Trademark Office published a patent application from Apple that reveals a new power management system that will work with both a power adapter and seamlessly with a portable solar panel accessory for busy people on the go. Apple's engineers are thinking big with their on-site solar power now creating the energy equivalent to powering 17,600 homes a year. The experience that Apple's engineers are gaining with working with solar panels is filtering through to creating a power management system for future Macs and iDevices. Apple has already been granted seven solar power patents thus far and you could review most of them in our Green Technology Archives. Today's patent goes one step further than most by introducing us to a solar power panel accessory for mobile devices like a MacBook or iPhone that won't require a power converter. Apple's system may be closer to reality than first thought considering that Apple's senior power design engineer noted as the inventor of this system has been snatched by Samsung within the last year.
Apple is a cutting edge technology company that turned the music industry on its head and reinvented both the smartphone and information tablet. When it comes to energy, Apple is looking at how to harness solar power for both large and small scale projects like powering next generation iPhones or the iPad's Smart Cover. Just like Apple was ahead of the curve by introducing in-cell technology into the iPhone 5 which Phil Schiller introduced as "integrated touch," we now know that Apple is working on this same principle except this time around it's for integrating special solar technology right into future touch displays. They've been working on this project since 2008. A new breakthrough in solar cell technology appears to be around the corner based on a new report revealed this week. The report pointed to a new material called graphene that will be able to greatly advance products such as night vision glasses, cameras and yes, eventually solar cells. It won't happen tomorrow, but you could be sure that Apple's advanced R&D teams will be considering this new material if it could bring their integrated solar panel technology to the iPhone quicker.
The US Patent and Trademark Office officially published a series of 40 newly granted patents for Apple Inc. today. In this particular report we cover a real little shocker. In this granted patent Apple reveals that they've been working on display panel technology that integrates both touch and solar cells on a single panel since a little after launching their revolutionary iPhone. Apple's follow-up patent to this current one was published in 2010.
In August 2012 we reported on Apple's new patent application about a next generation iPad Cover that described integrating solar panels right into the cover as illustrated above in our cover graphic. To be honest, like most, it seemed like an idea that could be viable "sometime" down the road, like 2016. But apparently the race is on to get this to market sooner. Not only is Apple working on this idea, but so is a GaAs solar material maker called Alta Devices.
On August 2, 2012, the US Patent & Trademark Office published a mind boggling patent application from Apple that reveals features that they're considering for their next generation Smart Cover. This is obviously a master patent that could play out in several stages and/or in different Smart Cover configurations depending on the user's priorities. Apple's future Smart Cover could include interactive Multi-Touch panels or a secondary display and/or other features that include the use of solar panels, inductive charging, smart pen input and believe it or not, much more.
The US Patent and Trademark Office officially published a series of 23 newly granted patents for Apple Inc. today. In our third and final granted patent report of the day we focus in on Apple's sixth granted patent for solar power related technology. Our report also covers a secondary granted patent for an anti-theft system for iDevices based on using an accelerometer. Whether this one even passes the laugh test is up to you to determine.
The US Patent and Trademark Office officially published a series of 20 newly granted patents for Apple Inc. today. This morning's report covers patent wins relating to icon designs, assembly methods for the iPod and the iPod's capacitance sensing electrode based clickwheel. Yet the patent standing out amongst them all this morning relates to future solar powered portables and the power management circuitry that'll make it all happen. This is Apple's second major solar related patent win for 2011. While this technology may take another five to ten years to come to market, Apple is amongst a growing list of tech companies that are in a race to power portable devices like smartphones and notebooks with solar energy as one of their key power sources.
The US Patent and Trademark Office officially published a series of 16 newly granted patents for Apple Inc. today. In our first granted patent report of the day you'll learn about newly granted patents covering a solar power converter, an iOS camera related patent detailing therotation of display orientation of a captured image, a third patent covering a 3D Video Viewer that was meant for iMovie and a couple of iPhone docking station patents that illustrate features that have yet to surface.
A number of interesting Apple patent applications surfaced at the US Patent & Trademark Office yesterday. This report will cover three of them. The first covers Apple's ongoing research into solar energy for use with future portable devices. The second covers a new finger-oil resistant coating for iOS devices to keep our displays fingerprint free. The patent was only filed in February of this year which would suggest that this new coating may apply to devices set to be released in the coming months or years and not a technology already applied. The last patent is very interesting as well as it covers a new iPhone related antenna clip for use with an all-metal embodiment. The patent states that the patent figure is an exploded view of the device which could suggest that the antenna clip could one day be a part of an iPhone-nano-like device. Time will tell if this idea will ever fly, but it's definitely one to keep an eye out for going forward.