By now we all know the water ejection system of the speakers used by the Apple Watch after being submerged. Using the same speakers and playing a specific sound the system expels the water from the cavity and thus ensures optimal operation for sound reproduction. A system that, if we pay attention to the last patent obtained by Apple, could reach the iPhone.
An even more waterproof iPhone
The patent in question was applied for by Apple in 2019, although its publication by the US patent office took place yesterday. In it we can see a water ejection system for the iPhone very similar to that of current watches. A system that is capable of even protecting the iPhone from salt water.
When the speakers come into contact with salt water, the small salt crystals that are left behind when they evaporate can be deposited on the acoustic mesh. With this system, the movement of this mesh would be sufficient to ensure that all waste is removed. Apple expresses it that way in the patent:
Functions suffer when the portable electronic device is exposed to moisture. Therefore, it is necessary to accelerate the removal of moisture within the internal cavities of the portable electronic device in order to quickly resume the performance of these functions by the user.
Automatic detection and evaporation
The main difference or evolution compared to the system present in the Apple Watch lies in the ability to automatically detect moisture using different materials and components on the “walls” of the different cavities. So a future iPhone could play a sound, perhaps even inaudible, automatically when it detects that it is needed.
This system is developed in a second patent in which Apple proposes a system of electrodes and capacitive sensors that are sensitive to the presence of water. By checking the electrical resistance between the electrodes, it can be determined whether there is water in the system and, if so, use these same electrodes as an element to generate heat and evaporate it.
An automatic detection system and a system for the disposal of evaporation residues.
Although it is important for us to bear in mind that not all patents lead to final devices, we can draw one main conclusion from this patent. A water ejection system gives us clues to an even more submersible iPhone, or in any case, one more designed to be immersed. Today’s newest iPhones have an IP68 protection level, which means a dive of up to 30 minutes at a depth of up to 4 meters, but these figures could be improved.
It’s clear that Apple is continually looking for ways to improve its devices even in the smallest details. We may see a 100% waterproof phone, we may see this technology coming to the iPad or Mac, but one thing is clear, in the small details are the big differences.