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Apple patent bid combines solar with touch screen

Although Apple has yet to release a solar-powered gadget, its engineers clearly see the potential for solar power in multitouch devices, such as the iPhone and iPad.

A recently surfaced patent application, spotted by Patently Apple, shows that Apple employees filed a patent for a technology to embed solar cells under the touch screens of handheld devices.

Creating a single "stack" that combines the sensors for a multitouch screen and solar cell frees up more surface area, according to the patent description. The patent, which was filed in September 2008, also calls for the use of "light channels" to direct light to a solar cell underneath a touch screen, potentially using a parabolic reflector. More...

06-07-2010 21:19