updated 01:25 pm EST, Thu February 28, 2008
Apple has filed for several patents related to the MacBook Air that cover currently implement technology and hint at future expansion potential for the sub-notebook. Included is a patent for the collapsible port, which apparently was originally earmarked for the rear of the notebook and was to present additional options. The patent reveals that the collapsible port may show up on other Apple devices, with patent writers stating "the present invention may apply to other types of devices, and still remain within the spirit and scope of the present invention."
Patent drawings depict the possible addition of built-in Ethernet capabilities to the MacBook Air, with an RJ-45 port shown. The port would accessible to a user when the connection system is in an open position (FIG. 7A) such that an external cable (i.e., a plug of a cable) may be inserted into the connector. The patent also says that for example, each port (e.g., the RJ-45 port 142, as well as the USB and FireWire ports) can be separate from other ports such that a single port can be moved into open and closed positions independent from other ports.
Other Apple patents listed today included Media management system for management of games acquired from a media server, Method for shifting pitches of audio signals to a desired pitch relationship, Graphically Depicting Program Code Depth and System and Method for Mitigating Repeated Crashes of an Application Resulting from Supplemental Code.