As per a recent patent discovered by Patently Apple, the Cupertino-based tech giant is working on a unique case for iPhones that can both house and charge the AirPods. Sounds pretty cool, right? This way, you won’t have to carry the AirPods charging case everywhere you go. You can simply place your TWS buds in the dedicated charging slots that will be there on the case to juice up the devices.
Now, the patent titled Cases and folios for carrying and charging accessories, does not mention a housing and an inductive charging solution specifically for AirPods. However, the patent diagrams via which Apple explained their concept shows different kinds of iPhone cases with the AirPods placed at different locations.
An iPhone Case to Juice-up Your AirPods
For instance, Apple, in one of the diagrams, shows an iPhone case, with a camera cut-out of an iPhone 7/ 8 Pro, charging a pair of AirPods at the top edge. This figure also shows various other elements like the circuitry, magnets, battery, and even a possible display panel (wait, what!?).
Well, in figure 2 (above), the diagram shows the same case from the back, and there is indeed a secondary display at the back of the case, as marked in the diagram. Moreover, figure 5 shows a retention mechanism to securely hold the earbuds in place to keep them charging.
Another diagram in the patent shows a different kind of iPhone case with the inductive charging site at the back. So, in this version, instead of a secondary display like in the previous version, there is a raised area at the back.
This bulged area houses the AirPods and charges them, with the battery inside the raised back. It is looks kind of like a MagSafe add-on element, but it is not. There is also a third version that shows a folio case for iPhones with the AirPods charging slots embedded on the inside part of the folding cover.
Now, housing the AirPods in a case is not a new thing, as we have already seen many third-party iPhone cases do the same. However, charging the earbuds in these cases will be the real challenge for Apple here.
By this time, we have seen a similar patent from Xiaomi that hints at a smartphone with dedicated charging slots for a pair of TWS earbuds. On the other, the commercially available Lenovo ThinkBook laptop actually comes with dedicated charging slots for a pair of TWS earbuds integrated into the notebook.
Now, we just have to wait and see what workarounds Apple comes up with to make this unique iPhone case into a commercial product to sell.