“The U.S. Patent and Trademark office published a patent application from Apple today for solar-paneled technology designed for devices with small screens, such as iPhones or iPods,” Donna Tam reports for CNET.

“This ‘integrated touch sensor and solar assembly’ would involve integrating social cells into a touch screen by using electrodes that can pull double duty as a solar cell and a touch sensor,” Tam reports. “Apple envisions this technology for handheld devices, like ‘a media player or phone,’ according to the patent application.”

Tam reports, “In addition to images of different size iPods, the patent application also comes with an image of a screen that’s sized for an iPad.”

Read more in the full article here.