LOW-TRAVEL ILLUMINATED KEY MECHANISM

Utility Patent Application (A1)

July 11, 2019

Source: USPTO via Sqoop

Applicants: Apple Inc.

Inventors: Michelle R. Goldberg, Kathleen A. Bergeron, Paul X. Wang, Alex J. Lehmann, William P. Yarak, III, Kevin C. Armendariz, Zheng Gao

Embodiments are directed to a low profile key for a keyboard having an overmolded support structure. In one aspect, an embodiment includes a key cap having an illuminable symbol. A support structure having a pair of overmolded wings may pivotally couple to the key cap. A switch housing may surround the support structure and connect each of the first and second wings. A tactile dome may be at least partially positioned within the switch housing and configured to bias the key cap upward. A sensing membrane may be positioned along an underside surface of the tactile dome and configured to trigger a switch event in response to a collapsing of the tactile dome caused by a depression of the key cap. A feature plate may be positioned below the sensing membrane. A light guide panel may define at least one light extraction feature that may be configured to propagate light toward the key cap and cause illumination of the illuminable symbol.