The U.S Patent and Trademark Office has published Apple’s patent for “cases and folios for carrying and charging accessories.” The attached images of the case’s design illustrate a book like iPhone case capable of holding and charging AirPods. The case would also have slots to keep money and cards (credit, debit, or ID cards). Currently, AirPods are sold with a wireless charging case to power up the earbuds.
This application relates to a case for retaining a portable electronic device and an accessory. The case can include a main body that includes a back panel and sidewalls for retaining a portable electronic device. The case can also include a receptacle coupled to the main body. The receptacle can have a cavity that generally corresponds to the dimension of an accessory for retaining the accessory. The case can further include a first terminal, a second terminal, and a battery. The first terminal can receive electrical energy from the portable electronic device to charge the battery. And the electrical energy stored in the battery can be transferred to the accessory through the second terminal. The case and the portable electronic device may communicate via near-field communication. The case can further include a slotted compartment to store money and credit cards.
An iPhone case that can charge AirPods
The published document reveals that Apple had filed for “Accessories for portable electronic devices” in 2013 and now the technological advancement will enable the company to design a book-like iPhone case with a front and back cover capable of charging wireless accessories.
Recent advances in computing devices have allowed various electronic accessories for portable electronic devices to become increasingly sophisticated and complex. Those accessories add features to the electronic devices and provide convenience for the users. The electronic accessories are typically attached to the portable electronic devices via a port of the electronic device, or are wirelessly coupled with the portable electronic devices. The prevalence of wireless technologies has made wireless accessories more common, thereby eliminating the need for wired connections between accessories and the electronic devices.
Apple filed three different embodiments of the iPhone case to retain “a portable electronic device and an accessory with back cover, a front cover, and a hinge portion.
- A case that includes a retainer in the back cover to hold the portable electronic device (AirPods) and a battery in the receptacle in the hinge with a battery and a charge terminal.
- A body with two charge terminals; “first charge terminal that can be used to receive energy from a circuit external to the body.” And a receptacle coupled to the body to retain the portable device and house the second terminal coupled to the battery.
- The third embodiment has a first charge terminal with a battery on the surface of the cover layer. “The method can further include electrically coupling the first charge terminal to the battery so that electrical energy received at the first charge terminal can be stored at the battery.” A second charge terminal in the receptacle along the hinge.
Apple files for several patents annually, therefore, it must be kept in mind that this iPhone case with AirPods charging dock might not hit the shelves.