For true professional graphic artists, video editors, brokers, coders and science field professionals with deep pockets may finally get the option of owning a dual Pro Display XDR in the future as our cover graphic illustrates. Today the US Patent & Trademark Office published a patent application detailing this development.
Apple's invention covers a support stand for multiple displays. In their patent background they note that when users use multiple displays in a workspace, the displays are generally supported by multiple different individual stands or by independently-movable arms that extend from a single support point.
These individual stands or arms unnecessarily take up large spaces, are often aesthetically unpleasing, overcomplicated, and have inefficient redundant mechanisms. When multiple displays are used on independent arms, they can be difficult to align in a smooth and precise way due to inconsistent counterbalancing and arm lengths. When multiple displays are used on a single support, they cannot be effectively adjusted relative to each other about a vertical axis.
Apple's invention relates to features of a display stand for providing vertical, horizontal, and center pivot degrees of freedom for multiple displays.
The stand can have two legs spaced at end portions of the stand (e.g., farther apart than the mounting points of the outermost displays) that are linked by a substantially horizontal support bar.
The support bar can be vertically adjustable relative to the legs by synchronized adjustment of carriage assemblies associated with each of the legs. The legs can be referred to as vertical supports or vertical support bases. The vertical position of the support bar can be simultaneously adjusted relative to each of the legs due to a linking rod extending across the length of the support bar.
The linking rod can be referred to as a linking shaft or a rotatable shaft. The carriage assemblies can have rack-and-pinion features that are connected to each other by the linking rod, wherein rotation of the linking rod induces equal vertical displacement of the support bar at each leg.
The rack-and-pinion features can comprise contact surfaces configured to control their spacing to remain at a pitch diameter of the mesh at all times, thereby ensuring even movement at both ends of the display stand and minimized tooth slippage or binding at the rack and pinion.
The horizontal support bar can include an internal space in which shuttle devices are positioned, and the shuttles can be coupled to display support arms extending laterally from the display stand. The support bar can therefore be referred to as a hollow elongated structure with an internal passage for the shuttles, hollow structure being elongated in a generally horizontal direction when the support bar is in an orientation of intended use.
The shuttles can be horizontally movable relative to the support bar by using rollers or wheels that ride upon rails through the horizontal support bar. The rollers can constrain the movement of the shuttle devices along two principal planes of motion and can tolerate high moment loads about their moving axis/the longitudinal axis of the support bar. In this way the rollers can limit movement of the shuttle devices to stay within a single principal plane of motion or to be biased to travel along a single primary axis (e.g., the longitudinal axis of the support bar).
The rollers can be arranged on the shuttle devices in a crossing-axis arrangement with pairs of roller wheels being spaced along the length of the shuttle to prevent twisting or turning of the shuttle caused by the weight of an attached display or caused by movement of the shuttle along the rails.
At least one of the rollers can be biased into contact with the rail so that the shuttle stays in contact with the rails even if the shape or straightness of the rails vary along the support bar.
The rails can have V-shaped profiles to help support the weight of the support arm and display without roller slippage or unnecessarily large biasing forces on the biased roller.
The support bar can also be pivotable about a vertical axis positioned between the support legs. In other words, a first portion or segment of the support bar can be pivoted relative to a second portion or segment thereof. The joint can be referred to as a support bar joint and can be a single-pivot joint.
The linking rod for vertical adjustment of the support bar can extend through the support bar joint. Segments or portions of the linking rod can be joined to each other within the single-pivot joint by a universal joint that synchronizes rotation of one segment of the linking rod (e.g., a segment in the first portion of the support bar) with another segment (e.g., a segment in the second portion of the support bar).
A rotatable handle can be positioned at each end of the support bar, wherein rotation of the handle can adjust the support bar upward and downward along the carriage assemblies. The handle can be connected to the linking rod and can rotate the pinion (and the linking rod attached to the pinion) relative to the rack in order to move the carriage assemblies.
In some embodiments, the handle can include a slip clutch to limit or prevent over-torqueing the handle and linking rod. The slip clutch can comprise a friction-based rotor and biased plate assembly. The handle can also include a friction engine to help balance input torque required for upward or downward adjustment of the support bar.
The friction engine can vary its application of friction based on whether the support bar 106 is moving upward, downward, or is static.
Yet another aspect of the disclosure relates to a display stand comprising a vertical support base, a support bar vertically movable relative to the vertical support base, with the support bar being configured to mount to a display, and a handle to adjust a position of the support bar relative to the vertical support base between two extreme raised and lowered positions, with the handle having a slip clutch.
When the support bar is positioned between the two-extreme raised and lowered positions, rotation of the handle can raise or lower the support bar relative to the vertical support, and when the support bar is positioned at one of the two-extreme raised and lowered positions, rotation of the handle can slip the clutch.
Apple's patent FIG. 1 shows an isometric view of a display stand in a straight configuration; FIG. 2 shows an isometric view of the display stand of FIG. 1 in an angled configuration; FIG. 6B shows a top view of the joint 120 with the joint 120 in a pivoted or angled configuration.
Considering that this is a patent application, the timing of such a product to market is unknown at this time.
Apple's invention for Pro Display XDR display lift arm came to light today under patent application #20200378481 that you could review that here if you're interested.
Apple's invention covering the Pro Display XDR display option regarding "Nano-Texture Glass" was published today under patent application 20200379143.