Apple patent application reveals new combined speaker and audio port

“On July 10, 2014, the US Patent & Trademark Office published a patent application from Apple that reveals Apple’s intent to reduce the number of openings at the bottom of an iPhone,” Jack Purcher reports for Patently Apple.

“The focus of this invention is to reinvent the audio jack port so that when a user isn’t using the audio jack port, audio can be sent through that same port instead of a dedicated speaker,” Purcher reports. “The new combination port may support a lightning connector.”

Purcher reports, “Combining a speaker and audio jack port is an evolutionary move on Apple’s part because another patent filing of theirs that we recently covered illustrates that ‘Future iPhones may not Require External Audio Grilles‘ at all.”

More info and Apple’s patent application illustrations in the full article here.

Related articles:
Dumping the headphone jack for Lightning and other ways Apple could reinvent headphone tech – June 22, 2014
Why Apple may axe the 3.5mm headphone jack – June 20, 2014
Apple may ditch analog 3.5mm headphone jack for Lightning to make thinner devices – June 6, 2014
Apple introduces MFi specs for Lightning cable headphones, iOS software update to deliver support – June 5, 2014
Apple preps HD audio for iOS 8 plus new Apple In-Ear Headphones and lightning cable – May 13, 2014
Apple patents biometric sensor-packed health monitoring earphones with ‘head gesture’ control – February 18, 2014
Apple paves way for more affordable iOS accessories with lower MFi and Lightning licensing fees – February 7, 2014

12 Comments

    1. Hopefully they will be head phones that I can use with any audio device instead of having an exclusive, built in connector that ONLY connects to an Apple product.

      1. Of course it will be a unique Apple Connector, there will be adaptors for connecting other devices. There are pros and cons to everything, but reducing openings and connectors will ultimately make the device more reliable.

  1. What if you are listening to the phone by speaker while charging it? The lack of a port comes into play then- big time.

    Maybe Apple wants you to buy a (Dead)Beats Bluetooth speaker with it’s trademark shitty sound by Dre. Gotta make that $3 Billion back somehow.

    How’s this for a promotion:
    Buy one before the new iPhone comes out and Dre will come over and personally beat up your girlfriend/partner/wife like Dr.Dre’s ex-wife, Michel’le.

    #beatsbydre

    1. If I understand this correctly they want to get rid of the speakers in favor of putting the sound out via the lightning/compatible port. I see your point concerning listening to audio while charging. I suspect if a charge state is detected the speakers will work as usual. This however may not be desirable in places where you don’t want the audio to be overheard while charging.

    2. The lack of a port comes into play then- big time.

      Absolutely! I often have my nearly battery-dead iOS devices connected to a secondary battery or charger WHILE listening to audio. Uh oh.

      I have faith that Apple will NOT foist purely Bluetooth speakers on its customers. I can’t imagine Apple settling for the destructively compressed audio forced through Bluetooth’s incredibly inadequate bandwidth. Other companies supplement Bluetooth’s crap bandwidth with further bandwidth and I expect Apple to do the same.

      If that is the case, then supplemented ‘Bluetooth’ headphones would replace current phono jack headphones. Not that I’d look forward to the added battery expenses. 🙁

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