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Future Apple Watches, iPhones could be (sorta) self-cleaning

Future Apple Watches and iPhones could have limited self-cleaning features according to two newly granted Apple patents.

In the patent filings, the tech giant notes that some mobile electronic devices are equipped with sensors and transducers that enable the devices to perform far more functionalities than communications. Media playing, photography, location detection, online shopping, social media, online banking, calendar and health applications such as heartbeat, blood pressure and blood oxygen level measurement are among the apps that an Apple Watch and iPhone can provide. communication device can facilitate. What’s more, they can be equipped with environmental sensors, such as pressure sensors, humidity sensors and gas sensors.

However, such devices are prone to organic residue accumulation, such as skin oils, dirt, body hair, etc. Such accumulations can contaminate the device housing and/or the sensor packaging that can produce interference signals and result in increasing sensor errors over an extended period of time. Apple wants the Apple Watch and iPhone to be able to remove organic contaminants and to clean the device housing and sensor packaging in order to ensure accuracy of the environmental sensors. 

Patent number 20200237940 is for “photo-oxidation removal of organic contamination for environmental sensor integration.” This involves Apple Watch and iPhone housing that includes one or more ports for allowing air flow between the surrounding environment and a cavity of the housing. Environmental sensors are coupled to the housing and can sense an environmental agent included in the air flow. The optical source can illuminate the cavity of the housing to decompose unwanted organic compounds inside the port.

Patent number 20200237947 is for “removal of organic contamination by ozone oxidation for environmental sensor integration.” This invention involves a housing, one or more environmental sensors and an ozone source in an Apple Watch or iPhone. The housing includes one or more ports for allowing air flow between the surrounding environment and a cavity of the housing. The environmental sensors are coupled to the housing and can sense an environmental agent included in the air flow. The ozone source can generate ozone gas within the cavity of the housing to decompose unwanted organic compounds inside the port.

the authorDennis Sellers
Dennis Sellers is the editor/publisher of Apple World Today. He’s been an “Apple journalist” since 1995 (starting with the first big Apple news site, MacCentral). He loves to read, run, play sports, and watch movies.

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