That Apple logo on your iPhone sure is pretty, but it doesn’t do a whole lot other than remind you who made your phone in case you forget. It’s kind of lazy that way, really.
But a recently published patent suggests that Apple might put that shiny bobble to use in future models of its hardware.
The filing, called “concealed electronic connectors,” describes how “conducting inserts may be positioned” within “multiple apertures which each define a portion of a symbol used to identify the device.”
What that could mean is that the pretty Apple on your phone might be incorporated into the hardware and house sensors or even be part of the charging system.
Imagine, for example, a future iPhone that doesn’t even have a Lightning cable connector. Instead, it connects to your computer and its charger via a cable that attaches to the phone itself using a magnetic system similar to the one included with the Apple Watch. And that would be great news for me because I’m constantly worried about snapping that bit off if I’m not careful while I’m attaching it.
And while we’re getting rid of stuff, the logo could also replace the existing home button. What if it housed a Touch ID sensor so that you could unlock your screen just by touching the back? It could also be a combination home/lock button and clean up the handset’s profile even further by getting rid of some of the last analog controls remaining.
Most interestingly of all is the filing’s description of multiple apertures containing “first and second portions of a symbol,” suggesting that the logo would be doing multiple functions. And this may not even just apply to iPhones; the paperwork describes words as being part of the hardware. This suggests that Apple is also thinking of incorporating this tech in desktop and laptop computers, which feature identifying text more prominently than iOS devices and won’t have it covered with a case.
Whatever, if anything, Apple decides to do with this patent, it looks like the company is looking at how to use every part of its devices.