Apple's upcoming flagship device, dubbed the iPhone 7, is expected to sport a new design not only in terms of thickness but also its ports for speaker and microphone, which will come with shutters to prevent contaminants from getting inside the device.

A new patent, titled "Electronic Devices With Housing Port Shutters", filed by Apple has detailed a new way of blocking openings in a handset that can allow entry of harmful particles and liquid. It came a few days after reports emerged that the iPhone 7 would be waterproof.

"An electronic device may have a housing in which a display and other components are mounted. Audio components such as a speaker and microphone and other electrical components may be mounted in an interior portion of the housing," reads the patent published by the US Patent & Trademark Office

"A shutter may be interposed between the audio component and the housing port. The shutter may have an electrically controlled positioner that is used to position a movable shutter member," adds the patent.

The iPhone 7 is expected to be released next year along with its bigger sibling, the iPhone 7 Plus. AppleInsider has reported citing reliable sources that the devices will be launched early. So, it wouldn't come as a surprise if it is released in June and July like the iPhone 4s and its predecessors.

According to reports, the iPhone 7 will sport a 4.7-inch LCD display, measure between 6.0 and 6.5 mm in thickness, will be powered by an A9 chip and come packed with 2 or 3 GB RAM.