Apple makes a splash with new waterproof iPhone patent

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Water way to test your iPhone!
Water way to improve the iPhone.
Photo: LifeProof

Apple today published an intriguing patent application with a unique method for waterproofing future devices — by covering ports, like those for USB or headphones, with self-healing seals.

Described as an, “electronic device with hidden connector,” the invention describes how self-healing elastomeric material could seal each of the ports, which would then be opened by puncturing them with external connectors, such as power or audio feeds, in the event that they needed to be used.

Apple designs its own multicolor 3-D printer

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Screen Shot 2015-12-03 at 13.17.43
Could Apple build a mass-market 3D printer for consumers?
Photo: Apple

Apple hasn’t released a new printer since the heady days of the LaserWriter 8500 in 1997, but a new patent application suggests the company is working on a new printer — and it’s no ordinary one, either.

Published today under the name “Method and apparatus for three dimensional printing of colored objects,” the patent application describes a 3-D printer capable of not only printing amazing three-dimensional structures, but doing so in multiple colors.

Tiny shock absorbers could save you a fortune in iPhone repairs

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broken-iPhone-5
An avoidable disaster?
Photo: Cult of Mac

iPhones are pretty tough things, but despite all the Gorilla Glass and engineering magic Apple can throw at them, they’re still susceptible to broken screens when dropped.

That could change in future iPhone models, with a newly-published patent application describing an automated mechanism for protecting the iPhone display with a method straight out of James Bond.