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A new uncovered patent shows that Apple is currently working on a new dock connector design that will let you device with multiple orientations (i.e. portrait or landscape). The device appears to be using an inductive connection for both charging and syncing the the iPad or iPhone.
The patent, entitled "Methods and Apparatuses for Docking a Portable Electronic Device That Has a Planar Like Configuration and That Operates in Multiple Orientations," was filed on March 25 of this year.
"The electrical contacts may be flat planar contacts that lie flush on the surface of the housing," the patent says. "In some cases, the flush mounts may be spring-loaded or utilize a flexure in order to ensure mating contact with each other when the portable device is docked."
This new design could alleviate one of the biggest design flaws in cases: the inability to dock an Apple device while in its case. Even Apple fell victim to this design flaw with its iPad case and iPhone 4 bumpers.
Follow this article's author, Cory Bohon on Twitter.