Apple Wins Patent for a Future Apple Watch Band that includes Embedded Batteries to Power more Features & Extend Battery Life
Today the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office officially granted Apple a patent for a future Apple Watch band with embedded batteries. A longer battery life for Apple would enable users to use their smartwatch for longer times with less frequent recharging.
Apple states in their granted patent that Apple Watch (a smartwatch) offers a variety of different features and applications that makes it attractive to users. Apple Watch can be powered by a rechargeable battery that is located within its body. However, different features and applications offered by Apple Watch could require differing amounts of processing and power, which can drain the battery life of the rechargeable battery and diminish the user's ability to use Apple Watch for some features as they desire without recharging the battery. The amount of power that can be produced by a battery can be based on the volume of the battery itself. Accordingly, the amount of power producible by batteries that are housed within the watch body is limited by the space available in the watch body.
Apple's invention covers a watch band for a future Apple Watch that houses a series of embedded batteries in order to provide additional battery life. This can provide an additional power source for Apple Watch without increasing the size of the Apple Watch body.
To keep the batteries out-of-contact with the external environment, the watch band can hermetically seal the batteries within the watch band. In addition, the watch band can include an inner frame or an outer frame that helps prevent or limit stretching and/or twisting of the watch band in order to help maintain the structural and electrical integrity of the electrical components and the batteries within the watch band.
Apple's invention describes a watch body and watch band architectures for housing batteries within the watch band and for transferring power from the batteries within the watch band to the watch body in order to power the watch.
In some embodiments, a strong inner frame, like an endoskeleton, provides structural support for housing batteries within a watch band, while a flexible outer covering seals the batteries in the watch band.
For example, a watch band can house batteries in an inner frame that includes a slot for each battery. A battery connector can connect each of the batteries in the watch band to each other, and the battery connector can be configured to transfer power from the batteries to a watch body connected to the watch band.
The inner frame can be constructed of a flexible non-extendable high-strength material. The inner frame helps limit stretching and twisting of the battery connector. An outer covering can entirely encompass the inner frame and hermetically seal the batteries and the battery connector.
In some embodiments, a flexible inner covering seals the batteries within a watch band, while a strong outer covering, like an exoskeleton, provides structural support for the band around the batteries. For example, a watch band can house batteries within slots of an inner covering. A battery connector can connect each of the batteries in the inner covering to each other, and the battery connector can be configured to transfer power from the batteries to a watch connected to the watch band.
The inner covering hermetically seals the batteries and the battery connector. An outer frame can have corresponding cavities that correspond to the slots of the inner covering. The outer frame can entirely encompass the inner covering and provide structural support for the watch band to help limit stretching and twisting of the inner covering and the battery connector.
Apple's patent FIG. 1 below shows a perspective view of a wearable device including a watch band that includes embedded batteries (#122); FIG. 2 shows a top view of a future Apple Watch band with embedded batteries; FIG. 3 shows a perspective view of the watch band and its inner architecture; FIG. 7 shows a detail cross-sectional side view of the watch band and its inner architecture.
For finer details, review Apple's granted patent 10,849,392 that was published today by the US Patent and Trademark Office.