Apple Invents a Modular Desktop Display System & Stand for the 'Rest of Us' while details of their Pro Display Arm Mount Surfaces
Apple’s US$1,000 Pro Display XDR stand is the most expensive dongle ever, reported The Verge last June. Today the US Patent & Trademark Office published two patent applications from Apple that cover the both the XDR stand's Display Arm along with an all-new display stand that is likely for a future display for the "Rest of Us."
Apple's invention covers an all-new modular design that a magnetic attachment mechanism attached to a stand for a display unit. The display unit includes a housing enclosing a display panel. The housing has a recess formed on a rear surface of the housing to accept the magnetic attachment mechanism. The magnetic attachment mechanism includes a magnetic element that is magnetically coupled to a corresponding magnetic element in the housing of the desktop display device when the magnetic attachment mechanism is inserted into the recess. The magnetic attachment mechanism also includes a latch mechanism that locks the display unit to the stand when the latch mechanism is engaged with a surface feature of the recess. The latch mechanism can be disengaged to allow for mobility of the display unit as separated from the stand.
In some embodiments, a magnetic attachment mechanism is described that secures a display unit to a stand. The magnetic attachment mechanism includes a housing having a size and a shape corresponding to a recess formed in the display unit.
A magnetic element is attached to the housing. When the magnetic attachment mechanism is inserted in the recess, the magnetic element is magnetically coupled with, via an attractive force, a corresponding magnetic element in the display unit positioned proximate the recess.
A latch mechanism is included in the magnetic attachment mechanism and configured to automatically engage with a surface feature formed in the recess when the magnetic attachment mechanism is inserted into the recess.
An actuating mechanism is included in the magnetic attachment mechanism and configured to lock the latch mechanism in an extended state that prevents the magnetic attachment mechanism from being extracted from the recess.
In some embodiments, the magnetic element and the corresponding magnetic element are permanent magnets. The permanent magnets may include a neodymium alloy.
Apple's patent FIG. 2 below illustrates a modular display system that enables the display unit to be detached from a stand.
Apple further notes that In some embodiments, a shape of the housing is substantially cylindrical. In other embodiments, the shape of the housing can be rectangular, triangular, or any other regular or irregular shape that conforms with the shape of the recess.
In some embodiments, the latch mechanism includes a movable component that can be positioned between a first position in the extended state and a second position in a retracted state. The movable component can be biased towards the first position in the extended state by a biasing mechanism. The biasing mechanism can include a spring compressed between a surface of the movable component and a protrusion of a component of the housing.
The surface feature can include a protrusion at an entrance of the recess that forms a slot in a radial surface of the recess. The movable component, when in the first position while the magnetic attachment mechanism is inserted in the recess, extends into the slot.
In some embodiments, the actuating mechanism is manually operated. In other embodiments, the actuating mechanism is operated via an electrical actuator such as a motor. The actuating mechanism can be coupled to a motor configured to rotate the actuating mechanism between the first position and the second position.
The actuating mechanism can include slots for accepting a protrusion of movable components of the latch mechanism. The protrusion assist in moving the movable components between the extended state and the retracted state.
And finally, in some embodiments, the movable component of the latch mechanism is locked in an extended position when the cam mechanism is in the first position. The movable component of the latch mechanism is free to move between the extended position (or extended state) and the retracted position (or retracted state) when the cam mechanism is in the second position.
Apple's patent application 20200084902 that was published today by the U.S. Patent Office was filed back in Q3 2019. Considering that this is a patent application, the timing of such a product to market is unknown at this time.
Apple's Pro Stand Support Arm Mount
Apple's invention is a display stand assembly and related methods that can make usage of the stand intuitive, secure, and robust. Traditional display stands comprise a top hook and spring latch or screw mount. Once assembled, the display can then rotate, relative to the stand, between landscape and portrait orientation. In either case, the user is required to actively move a latch or apply a screw to attach the display to the stand, and these activities can only be performed from the rear side of the screen.
A user attempting to mount the display to the stand from the front of the display cannot do so. If the display stand or display are not movable to a position where the rear side of the display is accessible, the user is unable to mount the display.
Aspects of the present disclosure relate to an implementation of a display stand attachment method wherein a combination of magnetic features and latches work together to allow "blind" mounting of the display to a mounting portion (i.e., the mount portion or the "puck") of the stand. In other words, the user can hold the display from the viewing side of the display and can mount the display to the stand without the mounting portion of the stand being visible and without having to awkwardly reach behind the display in order to secure the mounting portion to the display. In some embodiments, the user can quickly and easily "click in" the display to the mounting portion with a single horizontal movement of the display relative to the support arm on the stand and then let go without the display becoming disconnected from the mounting portion.
Apple's patent FIG. 1 above shows a front view of a display in a landscape orientation and lowered position relative to a stand; and FIG. 2 shows a right side view the display assembly of FIG. 1.
Apple's patent Application 20200081483 was published today by USPTO and originally filed in Q3 2019. You could drill into this patent here for more details. You could also check out Apple's overview of their XDR Display and stand here.