A recently discovered Apple patent application dated from June 2009 suggests Apple may build future devices with an antenna housed directly underneath the familiar Apple logo. The idea is genius -- the Apple logo is going to be on the iPhone or MacBook anyway, so why not stick an antenna underneath it? This internal design would bring the antenna close to the surface without increasing the risk of accidental contact from your hand or any other interfering material. Such a design could have prevented the iPhone 4 antennagate scandal that rocked Apple's world earlier this year.
According to the patent details, the logo would be made of a dielectric material that allows for the transmission and reception of radio-frequency signals. The patent applies to Wi-Fi signals as well as GSM 850/900/1800/1900 MHz so this technology could find its way into the MacBook as well as the iPhone. Unfortunately, Apple is not the first to apply for a patent for an antenna-fied logo. An earlier patent from Dell describes a logo-shaped antenna that actually takes the place of the logo in the device.
This antenna technology is also not new to Apple, as a variation is already in use on the 27-inch iMac and the Apple iPad. A teardown of the iPad by iFixit uncovered the iPad's antenna which was resting directly underneath the Apple logo. A similar iMac teardown, also by iFixit, revealed the presence of an AirPort antenna hiding behind the aluminum-encased, plastic Apple logo. This patent presumably describes the next generation of this antenna-logo design. How much do you want to bet we see the second iteration of this in an upcoming iPhone, maybe even the iPhone 5?