Apple’s iPad smart cover might be just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to integrating magnets within accessories.
A new patent granted to Apple Thursday details a “smart magnet” technology that the company might use to produce a whole new generation of tablet accessories. More specifically, the patent discusses how Apple may integrate electromagnets into future iPads that the operating system could control.
If that happens, Apple could start producing “smart docks” for the iPad that automatically lock the device into a groove to further prevent it from being knocked over. Theoretically, the same could be true for other accessories you may want to keep close to your device, such as tablet stylists/pens, camera lens attachments, credit card readers, and more. The patent also discusses how the smart magnet tech could be used to link up two separate iPads, possibly for use in gaming or a glasses-less 3D video experience.
That’s a huge leap in innovation from the company’s current use of magnets in the smart cover, which only wakes up the screen when you open it.