updated 10:40 am EST, Thu November 10, 2011
Apple patent would boost sound of iPod nanos
An Apple patent application published Thursday points to Apple exploring the possibility of giving the current iPod nano and iPod shuffle much larger speakers. The simply titled "Speaker Clip" would integrate a flat-panel speaker directly into the clip itself. The improved sound could be used to provide anything from audible feedback for the interface through to direct listening without needing headphones.
The speaker could be a piezoelectric example that didn't need to get significant extra power from the iPod itself.
Filed in May 2010, the patent isn't necessarily an indication of plans to add a speaker to existing, non-iOS iPods. This year, both the iPod nano and iPod shuffle were left virtually untouched other than software updates on the nano. Questions also exist over whether or not Apple wants to make heavy investments into the iPod line. The company has seen a constant decline in iPod sales and now gets at least half of iPod sales from the iPod touch, giving it less incentive to support the basic players.
In using what looks to be a drawing of the existing iPod nano as an example, however, the patent shows that Apple has at least been considering a revision of the existing design. [via AppleInsider]