Today Apple has been granted a patent that would allow it to manufacture headphones with circumaural to supra-aural convertible earcups.

According to the patent application named “Circumaural to supra-aural convertible headphone earcups “, Apple’s latest invention improves on conventional headphones by providing headphone earcups that can be converted between over the ear (e.g., supra-aural) and around the ear (e.g., circumaural) configurations, and any size in between. For example, the earcup may have an expandable cushion or telescoping ring connected to a frame system similar to a Hoberman Sphere.

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“Supra-aural headphones have earpads that are smaller than those of circumaural headphones and press on the user’s ears, instead of the head. Supra-aural headphones are therefore typically smaller than circumaural headphones and may be more suitable for daily use and travel. Because the earpads of supra-aural headphones can rest on the user’s ears, however, they can become uncomfortable after a period of time and achieve less sound attenuation than circumaural headphones,” reads the document published by the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office on Tuesday.

 

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Patents don’t always turn into products and it’s unclear if Apple plans to implement the new headphone design into upcoming devices.

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