On May 16, 2013, the US Patent & Trademark Office published a patent application from Apple that reveals their ongoing work with their future "Shopping App." Apple first revealed an extensive patent filing for NFC as it related to "Shopping" back in 2010 as a companion app to their future iWallet. Just like Apple's Passbook keeps gift cards, coupons, tickets and passes into an organized app, Apple's iWallet is likely to contain another round of things that relate to their financial app and the "Shopping" feature is just one. Last week's update to the Shopping app focused on methods of setting payment option preferences and more. Today's patent application adds at least five major aspects to the "Shopping" apps patent claims. The base of the patent doesn't change much if any. It's all about securing key aspects of the invention that Apple wants to protect, just in case they have to go court over it in the future.
Apple's Patent Claim # 31: Turn-by-Turn Directions
Apple adds this particular patent claim which states that the handheld device of claim 28, wherein the processing device is configured to provide turn-by-turn directions from the location of the handheld device to the one or more retailer.
Apple's Patent Claim # 32: A User Rating System
Apple adds this particular patent claim which states that the handheld electronic device of claim 26, wherein the processing device is configured to allow a user of the handheld electronic device to submit a rating for the product to the data manager via the wireless networking interface.
Apple's Patent Claim # 34: NFC
Apple adds this particular patent claim which states that the handheld electronic device of claim 26, wherein the input device comprises a near field communications device.
Apple's Patent Claim # 35: Purchasing Online
Apple adds this particular patent claim which states that the handheld electronic device of claim 26, wherein the handheld electronic device is configured to allow a user to purchase the product on-line.
Apple's Patent Claim # 36: List of Retailer Icons
And finally, Apple adds this particular patent claim which states that a non-transitory computer-readable medium comprises of: a medium configured to store computer-readable instructions thereon; and the computer-readable instructions that, when executed by a handheld electronic device, cause the processing device to perform a method, comprising: acquiring a product identifier from a product located near a handheld electronic device; transmitting a request related to the product identifier from the handheld electronic device to a data manager via a wireless network, the data manager communicatively coupled to a database of product information; receiving product information associated with the request related to the product identifier from the data manager via the wireless network; and displaying the product information on the hand-held electronic device as a list of user touch selectable icons related to select retailers selling the product and pricing of the product by each of the retailers.
Apple credits Andrew Hodge, Michael Rosenblatt, Amir Mikhak, Gloria Lin, Taido Nakajima as the inventors of patent application 20130124319 which was originally filed in Q4 2012. Considering that this is a patent application, the timing to market of such an Apple product is unknown at this time.
Two Other Patent Applications to Note Today
Client-Server Version Control System for Software Applications: Apple's invention relates to computers and computer networks and more particularly to maintaining compatibility between versions of distributed computer software applications, especially those relating to security of content such as DRM. Review
Tool for Navigating a Composite Presentation: Apple's invention reveals a great number of new features relating to iMovie and Final Cut Pro may be on the way, including a novel navigation tool. Review
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