Apple Considering Covering iPhones, iPods In Solar Cells?
Several new Apple patents have been published by the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office. One in particular, titled “Power Management Circuitry and Solar Cells” and filed August 8, 2008, shows once again that Apple is looking in to the use of solar cells on their mobile devices like iPods and iPhones as an alternative primary power source. This time, instead of building them in behind the screen of the device, this patent talks about a more obvious method: covering every available inch of their exterior.
One of the keys to the method this patent describes is a series of internal switch components that would allow the solar cells to switch on or off to maintain a constant voltage, compensating for cells being obstructed by a hand. The solar cells would most likely be used in conjunction to an internal battery.
You can view the full text of the patent here.
(Yes, it’s an iPod, not an iPhone. Just pretend it’s an iPhone with diagonal lines on the back and you’ve got the idea. Use you’re imagination…)