Apple Patents Solar-Powered iPod

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Strange as it might seem amid the flurry of tablet-based rumours, there has been some other news leaking out of Apple in bits and pieces, not least the fact that it seems we can expect to see solar powered, gesture controlled iPods someday.

While the upcoming tablet is certainly all the rage (or at least, so it seems if you’re to judge by just about any major media organisation’s output) the fact is that we still don’t know an awful lot about it. Indeed, while it might not seem likely at all, it could well be another Apple TV; that is to say, it might all look great until we actually see the device, at which point everyone essentially said, “Yeah, and?”

By contrast, the iPod is a product line that’s still alive and well, probably thanks in no small part to the fact that not everyone wants an iPhone. With the iPod still managing to keep itself together despite sales being somewhat cannibalised by the combination of iPod Touch and iPhone, it’s interesting to note that Apple apparently hasn’t given up on the device.

According to Engadget, some intrepid soul has managed to dig up a recent patent filing from the folks at Apple, detailing both a solar-powered and a gesture controlled version of the media players.

For now, details are a little light, and naturally there have been those who’ve been swift to point out that wrapping a solar cell around the outside of a device that spends the vast majority of its time in your pocket seems a little silly. Still, we’ll be curious to see just what a solar-powered iPod would be capable of.

Certainly those of us in Ireland likely aren’t the target audience for a solar-powered media player, but it doesn’t meant we can’t be just a little envious of our more equatorial readers who might get a little more use out of it…

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