Given that Apple’s next generation iPhone 8 is rumoured to have wireless charging, the tech giant has been granted a new patent this week -- an iPhone dock that could have Siri and a wireless charger built in.
According to the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO), the patent is for a dock for a portable electronic device including a housing, a microphone and a processor for activating a voice recognition mode.
When the voice recognition mode of the device has been activated, the processor of the portable electronic device is further configured to receive and process voice inputs from the microphone. The processor then generates audio output including a response to the user request and transmits the audio output to the speaker.
To put it simply, the patent describes a dock that could identify automatically that an iPhone had been placed into it and then activates a microphone to listen to voice commands to let users control the phone. In other words, we believe it is simply a Siri dock.
There are also mentions of multiple ways of charging of iPhone, including wireless charging, in the patent and describes docks that can just be simple connectors integrated with a microphone and speaker to complete small processing units with buttons and displays.
The new dock is expected to work with Apple’s HomePod just like an Echo Dot, but as a tiny, cost effective option for users wishing to use Apple’s digital assistant into their homes.
Apple applied for this patent in 2012, which means that it’s an idea that the company has been developing for years and refining. Still, it will be interesting to see a Siri-infused dock in near future.