Apple Files Patent to Put Antennas behind Logo on iPhones

The future looks like an Apple logo...scared yet?

Apple has a reputation for pushing the envelope of design in high-tech devices to the edge and beyond. Think the original iMac and the MacBook Air for an example of the edge and the iPhone 4 signal attenuation disaster dubbed ‘Antennagate’ as beyond. So what is the company cooking up in its labs now? Hiding the antennas in its products behind its logo.

According to a recent patent filing dug up by Patently Apple, Apple will start putting its antennas behind the Apple logos on the backs of its iPhones and MacBooks. It’s not as crazy as it sounds actually. With the antenna behind the big, silver Apple logo on the back of the iPhone, Antennagate should be a thing of the past. Let me explain.

First of all, it is really hard to touch the Apple logo on the back of an iPhone while talking on it. Don’t believe me? Try it yourself. It’s just too awkward.

Second, the patent describes the use of a dielectric antenna. (I have to look this up to understand what the heck it is.) Basically, the technology isolates the interference caused by the electronic device the antenna is inside and the radio waves it is trying to receive. Given how tiny smart phone components are becoming, interference caused by the device itself in comparison to the signal it is trying to receive is a big deal.

Apple’s patent tries to eliminate this through some pretty advanced electronics. Fiber optics and a laser also play a part in some designs. Wikipedia “dielectric wireless receiver” if you want the specifics. Oh, and it apparently can shield the iPhone from an electromagnetic pulse in case you’re in a nuclear blast area. Good to know…

If there are any electrical engineers out there reading, please feel free to leave a comment to set us all straight if I’m way off on this.

The patent also says that the antenna design will allow for multiple bands: GPS, cellular signals, Wi-Fi, etc. It can also be used in things besides iPhones and MacBooks. Think pendants, watches, headphones and the like. Pretty much anything that could use an antenna for some purpose.

Like what Apple has in the works? Patents are no guarantee that a technology will be used in the near future or ever really but this is Apple. After the big iPhone 4 disaster, you just know they want to come out with the greatest smart phone antenna ever designed in coming iPhone models to silence the critics.

Tags: , , ,