Apple Wins Patent for Noise-Cancelling iPhone Case

Samantha Murphy
Apple Wins Patent for Noise-Cancelling iPhone Case
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1. iBike

has won a patent for a removable case that cuts down on background noise.

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Touting what the company is calling a "windscreen" design, the concept aims to reduce distracting sounds picked up by the device's microphone that may make it hard to hear a phone conversation.

"The windscreen is designed to reduce wind noise, air blasts, vocal plosives and other noise," Apple said in its patent application. "This may enable the speech of a user of the device to remain intelligible despite the presence of such noise during a call, and without requiring the user to shout into the device's microphone."

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Although the patent was filed on Jan. 11, 2011, the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office last week. The patent is good for all portable electronic devices that enable users to participate in a real-time two-way conversation.

As shown in the image above, device calls for a windscreen sealed across an opening of the case that aligns with a microphone port built into the device (number 11). This would allow the passage of sound to go through the internal microphone and not pick up surrounding sound.

It is unknown if and when Apple will launch the windscreen case. Meanwhile, since patent was filed before the launch of the current iPhone 4S and judging by the rendering, it looks like the iPhone will stay the same shape and size for some time.

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"Handheld mobile communications devices, particularly mobile phones, have enabled users to engage in real-time two-way conversations while walking, running, riding in a car or during other activities," Apple noted. "In a number of these situations, a user may be conducting a conversation in a noisy environment, such as outside in the wind or inside a moving car with its window down."

Would you buy a noise-cancelling removable iPhone case? Let us know in the comments.

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Apple's smart bike concept is like the Nike+ running system, but for those on two wheels. In addition to seeing pertinent data from you (heart rate, etc.) and the bike (speed, distance, etc.) on your iPod or iPhone, the system could be used as a tool for group communication when biking with others.

This story originally published on Mashable .