A couple of new Apple patents were approved today, one of them focusing on an inductive charging dock. Essentially the detailed technology would allow Apple create a dock or other piece of hardware with the ability to charge future iDevices. Companies like Powermat incorporate a similar feature now, however they require additional hardware to be added to any device prior to charging.
Apple’s patent FIG. 12 illustrates a docking station that includes a reradiating antenna and an inductive charging circuit for inductively charging a handheld device. As shown, the dock housing is configured to receive a handheld device. While the dock housing is shown to receive the handheld device in an upright position, other dock housing configurations for receiving the handheld device along its other sides are also possible. The dock housing is further configured to enable charging the battery of the handheld device through an inductive charge coupling mechanism, and to also provide improved wireless communication by integrating the reradiating antenna as shown. The charge circuit is connected between the inductive charge coupling mechanism and a port for receiving power.