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Apple tackles sound leaks with new earbud patent

Apple may have some revolutionary new earbuds for us to go along with next month’s iPhone launch.

In a patent filed earlier this year, Apple described a “vented in-the-ear headphones” design that reduces the echo of your own voice that you sometimes hear when you're on the phone. The patent that got approved yesterday claims the invention “aims to improve the sound quality by venting or leakage.”

It apparently works like this: When external vibrations caused from the sound within earphones bounce against the skull or other parts of the body near the ear, sound quality is reduced. Apple’s earbud design has a “vented tip” that forms a seal within the ear canal. As stated in Apple’s patent filing, “This provides the wearer with good acoustic isolation against external sounds.”

This is good acoustic news for all of us who’ve tried carrying on a phone conversation while exercising or even walking on a noisy street. Now let’s hope Apple lets those new earbuds loose with that new iPhone.

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