Apple’s Curved Battery Patent Filing Hints At New Mobile Designs

Battery technology is one of the things holding back further innovation in the mobile space; batteries have certainly improved over the last few years, but they can barely keep pace with the power demands of increasingly power mobile devices. For example, many people can’t make it through a whole day with their smartphones or tablets without having to plug them in.

Further, for as small as batteries have become, they still hog an unfortunate amount of space inside a mobile device chassis. Apple is looking to address that issue somewhat by filing for a patent for a curved battery designed for mobile devices.

Apple curved battery

Such a battery includes a cell built in a set of layers that makes a cathode; the cathode has an active coating, a separator, and then an anode with an active coating. The components are sealed in a “pouch” to form the cell, and then the cell itself can be curved. To curve the cell requires 0.13 kilogram-force (kgf) per square millimeter of pressure using curved plates. The application of 85-degree (Celsius) heat can further form the cell.

This technology, according to the patent, could be used in virtually any portable electronic device, including laptops, smartphones, tablets, and cameras. It’s not too hard to imagine multiple designs that would be possible if the battery inside the unit could have a curve to it; perhaps we’ll be seeing a sexier iPhone in the not-too-distant future, for example.

Apple hasn’t been innovating all that much these days, but at least the company is theoretically and conceptually innovating.