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Apple Watch patent reveals charging case, smart bands

by Justin Herrick | February 27, 2018February 27, 2018 8:00 am PDT

Big things could be in store for the Apple Watch. The company behind the world’s most popular smartwatch recently filed an application for a patent that reveals two features unavailable on any device today.

It’s yet another sign that Apple continues to see wearables as a viable revenue stream despite the rest of the industry struggling to gain momentum.

Apple would like to develop a case for its smartwatch but probably not in the way you’re thinking. The patent doesn’t refer to a “case” as in the Apple Watch’s body that features the display and houses components. It’s a literal case that would store and charge the Apple Watch.

The Apple Watch isn’t alone, though. There’s more than just the smartwatch connected to the charging case. Also shown in the patent are watch bands. Apple’s additional room would be utilized for smart bands that have special capabilities.

In late 2017, Apple was issued a patent for self-adjusting bands. These bands are able to automatically fit the user’s wrist or be adjusted manually from the smartwatch. A specific implementation, though, hasn’t been selected. But the patent showed a number of different ways to achieve self-adjusting bands for the Apple Watch.

The latest patent filing reminds us of the case for the AirPods. In addition to storing and protecting the wireless earbuds, its case provides power away from a wall outlet or wireless charging pad. Based on what we see in the illustration above, the Apple Watch would receive similar benefits.

What we don’t know is how large the Apple Watch’s case would be. The patent doesn’t tell us anything about sizing, so we’ll have to keep waiting for more information. Assuming Apple makes it compact, Apple Watch owners could have their smartwatch charging at any time.

USPTO 9to5Mac

Justin Herrick

Justin is easily attracted to power buttons. His interest in technology started as a child in the 1990s with the original PlayStation, and two...

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