The iPhone and iPod Touch look set to become a little greener in the next few years, amid hints that Apple is planning to work solar power into its portfolio of electronic products.
Apple employees have reportedly filed patents covering the inclusion of solar panels in portable devices.
The panels would sit beneath the screen so as not to intrude on the design of the phone, but would allow the battery to be charged using the energy created by the sun.
Solar panels are not uncommon, but in most cases manufacturers place them prominently in order to make the most of the technology and to make a point of showcasing their green credentials.
However, because this would interfere with the typically sleek designs of Apple products, the invisible addition of solar panels would certainly be desirable.
Some have raised questions as to how the sensitivity of the touchscreen interface may be impacted by the addition of a solar panel into the construction of the display and whether further changes to the display technology would increase the cost of future iPhones to an unacceptable level.
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