The US Patent and Trademark Office officially published a series of 40 newly granted patents for Apple Inc. today. In this particular report we cover a patent relating to advanced haptics that could be used in many environments including video games. Apple notes that "in some instances, the signals outputted by the accelerometer may be used with interactive software (such as a video game) to provide an additional input device for user gameplay…" Today, Apple's advanced haptics are being incorporated into their upcoming Apple Watch.
Apple introduced a vision for a future version of their Magic Mouse back in 2010 that was the most descriptive patent filing on this subject matter. It described and illustrated how the next generation Magic Mouse would be able to sense a plurality of forces and applied velocities. It went into great detail about advanced gesture profiles for new "brush, scoop, tilt, and slide" capabilities. In 2013 Apple was granted their first patent on force sensing related to the Magic Mouse. Today, Apple has applied for a second patent on this future feature with refinements. In one example of using this future version of their Magic Mouse, Apple notes that "the amount of force may correspond to a height that a character in a video game is instructed to jump." Apple also envisions force sensing capabilities in a future Magic Mouse could apply to very sophisticated custom applications such as flight simulator and beyond.
On April 9, 2013, the US Patent & Trademark Office published a new granted patent from Apple that reveals a new feature that has yet to come to market. As such, Patently Apple will present this granted patent in the form a new patent application report that goes deeper into the technology presented. Apple has been razzed for a while now for not having a technology for the iPhone that is similar to Samsung's Beam that lets users share large files from one smartphone to another using NFC. Apple's newly granted patent provides such an interactions and so much more. Apple's solution works between a Mac and iPhone and provides editing software to crop, scale and adjust images. Apple had the technology mapped out in January 2010, or about 30 months prior to Samsung's public release of this feature for the Galaxy SIII.
On December 20, 2012, the US Patent & Trademark Office published a patent application from Apple titled "Haptic Feedback Device." In the last eighteen months, Apple has worked on projects involving smart haptics and integrating a haptics layer into future devices so as to provide users with a greater sense of texture to their multitouch displays. Today's invention describes Apple's goal of creating virtual buttons that will feel like actual physical buttons to the touch and more importantly, having keys of virtual keyboards feel more like physical keys. As Apple describes it, they want the "user to feel as though the keys had been depressed." Considering that Apple lists "a keyboard of a computer and a track pad for a laptop," we see that Apple is thinking of adding haptics to devices beyond the iPhone and/or iPad. Apple revealed some rather elaborate work on this theme last September.
Today a user is able to assign a custom ringtone to a list of various contacts found in their address book. In fact, custom ringtones can apply to SMS/MMS messages, email and calendar events to audibly inform the user of an underlying notification or alert. Today, a new patent application from Apple published by the US Patent Office reveals that Apple is working on advancing the notification system so that users will be able to assign custom vibration patterns to various notification events such as incoming calls, emails and so forth by using a new user interface associated with custom haptics. Uniquely, users will also be able to purchase custom vibration patterns from developers and/or web services at Apple's App Store. In the future, you're likely to see services like Twitter, Facebook and your favorite news sites delivering unique iDevice vibration patterns to alert you of new updates and/or breaking news reports. In-part, the new feature was made available with iOS 6.
On November 29, 2012, the US Patent & Trademark Office published patent applications from Apple covering a new haptic alert for a future iPhone along with a series of seven detailed applications regarding new touchscreen technologies that could be applied to iDevices on through to Apple's Cinema Display.
The US Patent and Trademark Office officially published a series of twenty-seven newly granted patents for Apple Inc. today. In our second granted patent report of the day we focus on three patents. The first is Apple's third Smart Cover win, the second covers Apple's iPhone haptics the last one covers the iPhone's cover assembly. To round off our report, we list an additional nine granted patents with some interesting ones worth exploring.
In March of this year we posted our first haptics related patent report for 2012 titled "Apple Looking to deliver a little More Buzz to iOS Devices." Then in May we posted another haptics report titled "Apple Reveals Wildly Intelligent Multi-Tiered Haptics System," which was a very detailed and ambitious application. Then in August we posted our third patent report covering haptics that related to a low Z profile linear vibrational motor. Today, in our fourth haptics report of the year we take a quick look at Apple's work on a linear vibrator which provides localized haptic feedback. Obviously Apple is searching for the right haptics solutions for the right devices. In fact, our morning report titled "Apple Advances Work on Virtual Keyboards for iMac & MacBook," is the ideal application for Apple's localized haptic feedback technology.
Some weeks there just isn't a wining patent declared by a rocking TKO. This week is such a case but that doesn't mean that that there weren't a series of solid inventions, because there were. A series of patent applications came to light today relating to improvements in the works for iDevice haptics, Apple's iSight camera, flash memory and accessibility for the hearing impaired. More times than not it's the simple utility patents like these that end up being implemented by Apple.
The US Patent and Trademark Office officially published a series of twenty-five newly granted patents for Apple Inc. today. This particular report covers a single, wild and crazy patent that touches on advancing television, advanced 5D technology, interactive gaming, teleconferencing, advanced tactile feedback technology, virtual reality data gloves and even a unique touch signature for starting a future vehicle. Is that wild enough for you?
Specialty glass Company Corning, famous for its "gorilla glass" used in Apple devices, has an ultra-slim flexible glass called "willow glass" that has the potential to enable displays to be wrapped around a device. Corning said it's currently shipping samples of willow glass, which is compatible with OLED displays, to companies. Companies like Samsung and Microsoft already have patents on this type of concept and Nokia has a concept video that's very interesting. The race to overtake Apple's iPad is hot, as competitors team up with cutting edge University research labs to find that next great thing that could topple the iPad. Yet Tony Fadell, Apple's former Senior Vice President of the iPod Division, thinks that Apple has more technology coming to the iPad that will keep the iPad on top.
On May 24, 2012, the US Patent & Trademark Office published a patent application from Apple that sheds more light on their future iPen and related graphics program. Apple continues to spend time and R&D funding on a future iPen device that's being designed to work with all of Apple's tablet-styled iDevices. The focus found in today's invention is twofold. Firstly, Apple is thinking of adding advanced haptics to the iPen so that the end user will be able to feel brush strokes and/or line thicknesses for example. Secondly, Apple is designing the iPen with a built-in mini speaker so as to provide users with various forms of audio feedback. To make all of this interesting and relevant, Apple sheds a little light on how their iPen will work with either a new graphics/paint program of their own and/or with known apps such as Autodesk and Microsoft's Paint.
I love days like this when we get to see a new and exciting invention from the Crazy Ones in Cupertino. In March there was a rumor that the new iPad would include new advanced haptics that didn't' pan out. But make no mistake about it; Apple is hard at work on delivering such a feature in the future. Apple has filed haptic related patents in In March 2011 and 2012. Yet today's surprise invention packs a punch with a wildly intelligent multi-tiered haptics system. The system will actually allow an iDevice display to deform so that it could provide the user with a button, an arrow or even a geological map to physically pop right out of the screen to give it 3D depth. If that wasn't cool enough, Apple's patent discusses a flexible OLED display that could be used for video glasses. Updated May 04, 2012.