Although Apple iPhones are quite the marvel both inside and out, there has always been a slight complaint about the iPhone models from users: the presence of the unsightly antenna bands that run around the back of the device. While these help with the transmission of radio waves (and thus help your phone connect to your cellular carrier), they are a bit of an eyesore and, to some, ruin the overall aesthetics of the iPhone. There was even one point where Apple had to settle a lawsuit over the antennae bands on the iPhone 4.
Wouldn’t it look (and function) so much better with a solid back-plate instead of the bands sectioning off the device? Currently, the iPhone 6 includes these bands, and the iPhone 5 and 5S models also have glass panels to help improve WiFi, Bluetooth, and cellular reception, too. If these are a deal breaker and general aesthetic nuisance for you, you may be in luck.
Apple was recently granted a patent for a certain type of anodized metal that could help to hide the antennae without interfering with cellular reception. The “composite structure” (as it is referenced) wouldn’t be limited to only iPhone devices, either. It is speculated that Apple would use this newfound metal across other devices.
According to the patent, the composite metal material feels and looks exactly like the current iPhone housing except that it would allow for radio signals to pass through effortlessly. Apple noted that the current metal housing was not a good conductor for radio frequencies, and that the plastic and glass materials on the device “have different visual qualities than metallic surfaces, which result in a visible break in the metallic surface of the housing.” They hope that this new metal will make for a look that is sleeker, more refined, and fluid.
Unfortunately, no one can be sure if this patent will ever come to fruition. Apple has filed for numerous patents on anything and everything. On the 23rd of this month the company received a whopping 52 patents that covered things like mixed media conferencing, channel scan logic, a diamond-cutting tool, and more. The composite metal patent, though, seems to be one of the more practical patents granted to Apple. Still, consumers will have to wait and see which of Apple’s long list of patents will make the newest devices.
Do you think the antenna bands need to removed? Have you ever even noticed them? Tell us what you think in the comments below!
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