A Solar Powered MacBook Could Have Battery Juice Until the Sun Blows Up

By Gerald Lynch on at

...or night time, at least. A freshly uncovered patent suggests that Apple is considering creating a solar power solution for keeping the batteries of MacBooks and iPhones topped up while the sun is shining.

Rather than being integrated directly into any particular Apple device (something which would cause problems when it comes to the company's sleek aesthetic design -- there still isn't really a way to make solar panels look good), Apple would be looking to create a discrete device. The filing states that the power management system would have to include a system micro controller (SMC) alongside a charger, with power reaching the system from either an AC-to-DC adapter, or straight from a DC-only photovoltaic solar panel's output. The system would also be able to take both mains and solar power input simultaneously, so you'd be free to leave your MacBook hooked up to a wall socket on a window sill on a summer's day without fear of it blowing up.

Of course, solar power is more or less useless in dreary, wintry Britain, but Apple's device could be good to enter production whenever the Cupertino team decide to green light it, seeing as it would be constructed with components that already exist. [Apple Insider]