“Apple’s quest to make electronic devices even smaller and thinner continues to be challenged by the size of a standard 3.5mm audio jack, prompting the device maker to explore new methods to shrink the input’s footprint, including collapsible ports,” Neil Hughes reports for AppleInsider.
“A new patent application from Apple was made public this week by the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office entitled ‘Low Profile Plug Receptacle,'” Hughes reports. “Discovered by AppleInsider, the proposed invention details ways in which devices could accommodate standard-sized headphone plugs while shrinking even further in size.”
Hughes reports, “Apple has proposed a number of methods for making audio jacks smaller while still accommodating standard size plugs. One method would use a ‘flexible housing’ that would expand when a 3.5mm plug is inserted into the device. Using a plastic housing, the side of the device would bulge outward to allow a plug to fit.”
Much more info in the full article, including Apple patent application illustrations, here.