Airbags for Apples and Amazons

Submitted by patentadmin on Sat, 11/19/2011 - 23:21

Butterfingers take note: You will soon be able to buy a smartphone that refuses to be a victim of your clumsiness.

Apple has patented a crack-resistant glass that "employs a tunable shock mount" between the glass and the rest of the device. When the smartphone's internal accelerometer lets it know it's falling, the mount will inflate to reduce the impact on the glass.

Reading this, one might think, "Well duh, phones with glass screens do tend to break if you drop them." But Apple has a reason for this high-tech defense against klutziness: The tech giant was hit with a class-action lawsuit initiated this past January by a man whose iPhone 4's glass screen broke when his daughter dropped the device while texting.

Meanwhile, Amazon also filed for a patent on tiny airbags for its mobile phones. But these technologies are unlikely to be available for at least several months - so for the time being, let's be careful out there!

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