Another day, another Apple patent approved which may give us a glimpse into the future of their devices. Yesterday, we stumbled onto a patent which would allow Apple to equip its future iPads with a laser keyboard, which we’ve seen concepts for in the past. Today, a new patent has revealed Apple may be thinking of the battery of the iPhone’s future, seeing how they can only fit so much battery into their mobile devices.

The patent that’s been awarded to Apple is for a solar-powered iPhone, which if it turns into an actual product, would change the landscape of mobile phones for years to come. Patent #8,368,654 is titled “Integrated touch sensor and solar assembly” and reveals its solar cell arrays are made of “electrodes that are used both for collecting solar energy and for sensing on a touch sensor array.” This means the touchscreen can serve a second purpose: to suck up the sun’s power-giving rays!

As with all patents, just because it’s been awarded to Apple, it doesn’t necessarily mean it’ll make it into a final product. But solar-powered mobile devices need to happen sooner or later. Just look how popular calculators became once they came with solar panels. You still carry one around with you at all times, right?

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