There have been rumors that the next iPhone could be waterproof. It is an odd rumor especially when you consider that Apple usually pays more attention to the design of its products, as opposed to thinking about ways to protect it and make it more durable (the camera bump is just begging to be scratched).
However we suppose things could always change and recently the folks at AppleInsider have discovered a patent from Apple that suggests one way the company could waterproof the iPhone. As expected, this patent talks about how Apple could potentially plug any holes in the device like headphone jack or Lightning port.
What’s interesting though is that this method will rely on self-healing elastomeric material, which means that probes attached to other components like data, power, or audio could puncture the seal when needed, but it will seal/heal itself when taken out. This means that you can plug your headphones or Lightning cable into the phone and not worry about breaking the seal as it could heal itself after.
That being said at the end of the day this is just a patent, so there’s no telling if Apple will ever implement this into future designs, but it is an interesting method nonetheless.