Macbook FeetSource: iMore / USPTO

What you need to know

  • Apple has patented a Macbook with a brand new feature.
  • A new patent reveals legs that could be used to improve cooling.

A new Apple patent has revealed how a future MacBook might use legs to improve cooling.

Noted by Patently Apple the patent is titled 'Deployable feet for display articulation and thermals performance' and states:

An electronic device can include a base portion, a display portion rotatably mounted to the base portion, and a deployable feature. The deployable feature can be deployed from a surface of the base portion by an actuation component coupled to the deployable feature. The deployable feature can support the electronic device, increase clearance above a support surface for one or more portions of the electronic device, and/or allow additional functionality for the electronic device.

The patent notes how on a support surface, most electronic devices don't get sufficient clearance and can often get warm as a result. The new Apple patent features several different scenarios in which feet could be used to improve the cooling of a device without the need to change up the computer's internal.

VPN Deals: Lifetime license for $16, monthly plans at $1 & more

Not only that, the patent reveals how this could all be done automatically, drawing on readings from your MacBook's software to determine whether the fans in the device have reached a certain speed, or the components a certain temperature before deploying the feet.

For instance, a fan can operate at full power when the deployable feature 305 is in a deployed state, allowing for maximum ventilation. In some examples, the position of the deployable feature 305 can depend on the speed of the fan, or vice versa. For instance, as the fan speed increases, indicating an increased need for cooling, the deployable feature 305 can extend to allow increased airflow to enter the vent 311 and the internal volume. In some examples, the deployable feature 305 can extend in response to a temperature of the electronic device 300. For instance, a threshold temperature, above which it may not be desirable to continuously operate the electronic device 300, can be determined. Thus, if the temperature of the electronic device 300 is approaching or has exceeded the predetermined threshold temperature, a determined by system sensors, the deployable feature 305 can be deployed to lower the operating temperature of the electronic device 300.

Many third-party accessory makers offer solutions for laptop cooling that use stands and extra fans, this patent reveals Apple might one day cut out the middle man and just include them in the design.

We may earn a commission for purchases using our links. Learn more.