Apple patents a case that speeds up the operation of the iPhone

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According to a recent patent from Apple, the company is considering making a case that would allow an iPhone to run faster without the user worrying about the phone getting too hot to hold. The patent entitled “Smart case for a portable electronic device”, allows an iPhone to determine if the device has a cover to, in that case, operate at a higher speed without risk of burning the user’s hand. A processor of the portable electronic device is configured to receive a signal indicating that the portable electronic device is in contact with and is retained by the protective sleeve. By responding to signal reception, the processor is configured to allow the component to transition from a first operating state to a second operating state. The first operating state is associated with a first operating temperature that corresponds to a first temperature range on the surface of a housing for the portable electronic device. The second operating state is associated with a second operating temperature that corresponds to a second temperature range on the surface of the housing. The second operating temperature is higher than the first operating temperature Apple explains what motivated the company to develop this system: These electronic components (inside an iPhone) generate heat during operation. Most of the heat is dissipated by convection and / or conduction. The air circulating over the surfaces of the device can carry heat by convection. Similarly, objects in contact with the device can carry heat by conduction. However, as the power of the device increases and its design changes, sometimes the amount of heat that is generated cannot be properly dissipated. In such cases, the temperature of the device will rise, which could cause failure of the components themselves due to, for example, melting of solder connections or failure of metal structures within an integrated circuit. Even if the temperature does not rise to the point of causing failure, the device itself may be uncomfortable to operate. For example, the surfaces of the device may feel hot to the touch, which can lead to an unpleasant experience for the user. Therefore, new techniques are desired to dissipate heat from the device or reduce the amount of heat generated by the device. Consider this patent as one of the new techniques. Apple suggests that magnets embedded inside the case could help detect whether an iPhone is wearing the accessory by creating a magnetic field that would be detected by sensors. Or NFC could also be used together with an RFID tag embedded inside the housing allowing the presence of a housing to be detected on the phone. The patent mentions the possibility of creating different cases with varying magnetic fields that could allow iPhone users to use different cases to reach different maximum speeds. There is no clue as to whether Apple will use this system at some point since, like other companies, it applies for and obtains a large number of patents every year and not all of them reach the hands of consumers.

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