On October 31, 2013, the US Patent & Trademark Office published a patent application from Apple that reveals a new power management system that will work with both a power adapter and seamlessly with a portable solar panel accessory for busy people on the go. Apple's engineers are thinking big with their on-site solar power now creating the energy equivalent to powering 17,600 homes a year. The experience that Apple's engineers are gaining with working with solar panels is filtering through to creating a power management system for future Macs and iDevices. Apple has already been granted seven solar power patents thus far and you could review most of them in our Green Technology Archives. Today's patent goes one step further than most by introducing us to a solar power panel accessory for mobile devices like a MacBook or iPhone that won't require a power converter. Apple's system may be closer to reality than first thought considering that Apple's senior power design engineer noted as the inventor of this system has been snatched by Samsung within the last year.
On October 24, 2013, the US Patent & Trademark Office published a patent application from Apple that reveals that they're still hard at work on a sophisticated next generation human recognition system. The work on this new system began in 2009 and their most elaborate work on this project was actually revealed in November 2012. We covered Apple's invention in great detail in our report titled "Apple Advances their Multi-Level Presence Sensing System." The 2012 patent provided the image of an HDTV and in this latest patent filing, Apple points to television content that may be R-Rated not being able to play if a young person walks into a room while the content is playing. Apple's new system will instantly scan an individual entering a room and adjust the TV as required. With an elderly person walking into a room, the audio may automatically be adjusted higher. If a Spanish friend walked into your living room, then the TV or Movie content would begin to present Spanish sub-titles. The advances discussed in the patent include fingerprint scanners, retina scanners and much, much more.
On October 24, 2013, the US Patent & Trademark Office published a patent application from Apple that reveals their intent to advance digital gifting on iTunes. The new system will provide gift givers with multiple new ways of personalizing their gifts by using video messaging and the ability to send their gifts through various social media sites.
Anyone who loves Apple's products knows that all of Apple and especially Jony Ive and his band of merry men go to extraordinary lengths to design products with precision and attention to detail far beyond your typical technology company. Apple fans around the world always enjoy Jony Ive and his team putting together short videos that showcase various manufacturing processes involved in making insanely beautiful products such as the current iPhone 5C or 5S. We even get a kick out of Ive's meticulous mannerisms and vocabulary for describing new Apple products. This week the US Patent Office published a series of new patent applications from Apple that allow us to dip into Ive's pool of delights. Apple's latest manufacturing process patents allows us to take a peek behind the magic that goes into Apple's cool products. They reveal Apple's fanaticism and attention to unthinkable detail. In Apple's new round of magnificent inventions we see Apple working on new materials, advanced adhesives that you'd never imagine and much, much more. If you're one that appreciates Apple's detail and have a fascination for manufacturing processes, then you're in for a real treat.
On October 17, 2013, the US Patent & Trademark Office published a patent application from Apple that reveals that their 2012 ultrathin iMac was manufactured by using a very sophisticated robotic force. The insane design precision didn't come about by accident. Apple's latest patent application describes a robotic solution created by Apple for the iMac and beyond. Apple's iMac webpage as noted above states that Apple re-imagined everything, re-engineered everything about the iMac and today's patent filing proves that out. This is Apple's second robotic invention. Apple's first design was for a robotic arm for manufacturing the iPhone that we covered back in January. Lastly, we present you with a secondary patent published today titled "Cosmetic Defect Reduction in Anodized Parts." It's Apple's new "finishing" bath designed to degrease, de-smut, anodize and chemically polish the iMac and other future iDevices until they reflect Apple's aesthetically insane finish so that they can give it their official stamp of approval: Designed by Apple in California.
On October 17, 2013, the US Patent & Trademark Office published a patent application from Apple that reveals improved technology coming to future iPhones that will further their support for Hearing Aid Compatibility (HAC) which began with the iPhone 4.
On October 17, 2013, the US Patent & Trademark Office published a series of four new Siri patent applications that were filed under Tom Gruber who was one of the original co-founders of Siri. Gruber was the man behind an in-depth Apple patent application which we covered back in January 2012 titled "Apple introduces us to Siri, the Killer Patent." While Apple has yet to take assignment, you could be assured that they will. Our report briefly covers the four Siri related patents that include coverage of Siri for vehicles. This is going to be a part of Apple's forthcoming iOS for the Car application debuting in 2014.
On October 17, 2013, the US Patent & Trademark Office published a patent application from Apple that reveals more details behind Apple's new Touch ID fingerprint scanner. Apple reveals that they added a method to the sensor that would allow it to scan a fingerprint at a much higher resolution than other sensors on the market without electrically shocking the finger. Apple also notes that their Touch ID technology could eventually apply to an iPad, MacBook and beyond. Technically speaking, Apple's patent relates to circuits that may be used to support fingerprint sensing, including boost circuits, such as inductive boost circuits.
In 2012 AppAdvice asked the question: "Will an Anti-Reflective Screen Ever Come to the iPhone and iPad?" Our September patent report covering Apple's patent application titled "UV Mask with Anti-Reflection Coating and UV Absorption Material," answered that question in respect to Apple working on a solution. The timing of this coming to market, of course, is another matter. This morning, Patently Apple was first to discover another Apple patent application on this very subject matter filed in Europe. This time around, Apple's patent pending invention discusses the manufacturing process and machinery associated with layering coatings unto the surface of device cover glass with such protective materials such as anti-scratch, color filters and most importantly, everything to do with anti-reflection materials for future products such as an iPhone, iPad or wearable computer.
Earlier this month we noted in a report that that IGZO displays used in Apple's current and future products will not only be brighter but could eventually reduce power consumption by 50% or more. Getting more life out of our mobile devices is important to all of us and it's a priority at Apple who is working to advance displays that could continue to provide a power savings.
On October 10, 2013, the US Patent & Trademark Office published a patent application from Apple titled "Systems and Methods for Ejecting Removable Modules from Electronic Devices." Some will find Apple's redesigned SIM Card tray invention that utilizes a combination of magnets very interesting. However, the part that I found most interesting of all had nothing to do with the design. For me it was Apple's revelation that future wearable computers would be a candidate for their invention.
On October 10, 2013, the US Patent & Trademark Office published a patent application from Apple that reveals their intent to one day reinvent the connector system for both Macs and iDevices. It's a universal desire for consumers to have a simplified connector system for computers or other electronics – and yet technically there are so many electrical standards in place today that it's close to impossible to think that we could have a utopian universal connector system. Yet Apple plugs away believing there's a way to be the first computer company to crack this nightmare of differing connectors; a way to keep the connectors on a Mac or iDevice super simple. Apple began this project back in 2011 and today we're getting more detailed information about how the reinvention of the connector system could one day be a reality.
Unlike any other time that I've known, technology companies are now engaged in several races to get new technology to market first and more importantly right. While Apple's Touch ID may not have been the first fingerprint scanner on the market, they definitely got it right and now all of the major smartphone vendors are scrambling to match Apple's success. Other races include indoor location services, advanced haptics, wearable computers, flex displays and the list goes on to include eye tracking and gaze control systems. Sony, Google and Apple are heavily researching this technology and today the US Patent and Trademark Office revealed a new Apple invention covering eye tracking that will apply to all future iDevices, the MacBook and more importantly, for use in your car, in a future gaming console or entertainment system. Controlling a system using advanced eye tracking is tricky and Apple's patent discusses how their system will overcome the number one problem facing eye tracking systems today: Troxler fading.
On October 3, 2013, the US Patent & Trademark Office published a series of 13 original patent applications from Apple. Once again there were no knock-out patent filings published today like a smartwatch or fingerprint scanner, but there were a few invention enhancement patents worth noting. One relates to enhancing future iDevice protective mechanisms that will assist iDevices in free fall. Another enhancement covers the iPhone's active noise cancellation function. Today's patent application summary report provides you with specifics behind Apple's key invention enhancements while providing you with links to a number of other interesting patents published today that relate to matters such as cryptographic operations and enhanced velocity estimations for touch inputs and much more.