Reports indicate that Apple has obtained a patent that could potentially pave the way for matte black versions of its popular products, including iPhones, smartwatches, tablets and laptops.
What is intriguing about this patent is the method it describes for achieving this matte black finish on anodized surfaces. Apple appears to be aiming for a true black shade, rather than a dark gray or blue. The patent reveals a unique approach involving light absorption and color particle infusion features.
It is important to note that the granting of a patent does not guarantee that these matte black devices will reach the market. However, it does highlight Apple’s continued exploration of innovative design possibilities.
This development comes as Apple recently obtained a patent from the US Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) for a technology described as an “anodized part that has a matte black appearance,” as PatentlyApple originally reported.
The patent in question, numbered 11751349-B2, originated in a May 2020 filing and is credited to James Curran, Aaron Paterson, and Sonja Postak as its inventors. This patented technology revolves around the process of applying an anodized layer to a metal substrate, with a unique touch to achieve a matte black finish.
Here’s how it works: The anodized layer consists of two key elements. First, it has an external surface with randomly dispersed light absorption features designed to absorb visible light incident on the surface. Secondly, it contains pores, with porous walls, into which color particles are infused. The end result is a matte black finish.
According to the patent description, this anodized layer is characterized by its color, which registers a value of less than 10 when using the CIE Lab color space. This technical approach promises a true matte black appearance with excellent light absorption properties.
Additionally, the patent also presents a variety of device concepts that Apple could consider offering with a sleek matte black color option. These concepts encompass a variety of Apple-exclusive products, such as smartphones, smartwatches, tablets, and laptops. While Apple previously introduced a matte black iPhone and a black MacBook, this patent hints at the possibility of a smartwatch and a matte black iPad joining its product line in the future.
What sets Apple’s approach apart is its pursuit of a genuine black color, rather than settling for the usual dark gray or blue tones often seen on its dark-colored devices. This development certainly adds an intriguing dimension to Apple’s potential offerings in the coming years.
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