Apple patent filing hints at more devices coming in different colors

There are conflicting rumors over whether the revamp of the 27-inch iMac that will include Apple Silicon processors will come in multiple colors a la the 24-inch iMac or will stick with the silver and space grey options. Apple has, so far, prefers the latter for its “pro” devices.

However, a new patent filing (number 20220066397) at least hints that more “flavors” might be coming to the tech giant’s products aimed at pro users.

About the patent filing

In the patent filing, Apple notes that electronic devices such as smartphones, telephones, computers, watches, and other devices contain conductive structures such as conductive housing structures. The conductive structures are provided with a coating that reflects particular wavelengths of light so that the conductive components exhibit a desired visible color. 

However, Apple says it can be challenging to provide coatings such as these with a desired color brightness. In addition, if care isn’t taken, the coatings may exhibit unsatisfactory optical performance across different operating environments and conductive structure geometries. 

Apple wants its various devices to be colorful, yet offer excellent color brightness levels and optical performance.

Summary of the patent filing

Here’s Apple’s abstract of the patent filing with some technical details: “An electronic device may include conductive structures such as conductive housing structures. A high-brightness, visible-light-reflecting coating may be formed on the conductive structures. The coating may have adhesion and transition layers and an uppermost coloring layer on the adhesion and transition layers. At least the uppermost coloring layer may be deposited using a high impulse magnetron sputtering (HiPIMS) process. The uppermost coloring layer may include a TiCrN film, a TiCrCN film, a TiCN film, or a metal nitride film that contains Ti, Zr, Hf, or Cr. The coating may exhibit a high-brightness gold color.”

Dennis Sellers
the authorDennis Sellers
Dennis Sellers is the editor/publisher of Apple World Today. He’s been an “Apple journalist” since 1995 (starting with the first big Apple news site, MacCentral). He loves to read, run, play sports, and watch movies.