Toggle Dark Mode
The next-generation of Apple Watch might be thinned out by way of moving components into the smartwatch’s band, a new patent application suggests.
The Apple patent application, published on Thursday by the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office, describes a method to bundle the bulky haptic feedback components and circuitry directly into a future Apple Watch’s wristband, saving space within the device’s body and potentially allowing it to be much thinner, Fortune reported.
The patent, which outlines a “band attachment mechanism with haptic response,” would deliver a nearly identical experience to the Apple Watch’s current haptic feedback, but with significantly reduced bulk. But in order to do so, Cupertino needs to explore how to bundle the components — electromagnets, piezoelectric and electroreactive polymers — directly into the wristband itself, PhoneArena reported.
The bundle of sophisticated electronic components could be placed into an already existing piece of the wristband, such as the strap buckle. The haptic system would probably attach via a hardwired connection — such as the hidden, non-serviceable diagnostics port that’s already on the Apple Watch, AppleInsider points out. The port, which is used to connect the Watch to demonstration displays in Apple Stores, can transfer data between the smartwatch and another devices.
All of these components would then cause the wristband to move — either side-to-size, or up-and-down — alerting users to notifications or alerts, according to the patent.
Of course, while a haptic feedback band could slim down the Apple Watch, it might also mean that third-party bands would no longer work with the future smartwatch. Due to the patent and sophistication of the method, third-party bands would likely forego any form of haptic feedback.
As with all Apple patent applications, it’s not known when or if this method will actually show up on an Apple Watch. But due to the timing of the application — which has a June 2016 filing date — a haptic feedback band might still be in consideration for the next generation of Apple Watch.
[The information provided in this article has NOT been confirmed by Apple and may be speculation. Provided details may not be factual. Take all rumors, tech or otherwise, with a grain of salt.]