updated 09:35 am EDT, Wed July 27, 2011
Possible integration a long-term prospect
Both Apple and Samsung have been evaluating the possibility of solar-powered products, claims Digitimes. The companies are also, in particular, said to be considering including Taiwanese solar firms in their supply chains. Some of the firms in question say though that markets may take time to develop. As an an example, industry sources add that a Samsung solar-powered netbook has an abnormally-sized solar cell, which is used in smaller numbers than with rooftop solar systems.
While it's unclear what sort of products Apple would want to integrate solar cells into, several possibilities exist. MacBooks would be the easiest, due to a wide surface area on their lids. Putting cells on iPhones, iPods and iPads is also an option though, especially as Apple has investigated the concept of embedding cells into displays. On a simple level Apple could simply provide external solar chargers.
Apple has reportedly been experimenting with a "new way" of charging the iPhone 6, which will only see the light of day in 2012. Most have assumed this means wireless charging, but Apple could conceivably bring solar into the mix. Solar would help to prolong battery power and improve Apple's image as a "green" electronics maker.