On December 11, 2014, the US Patent & Trademark Office published a patent application from Apple that reveals future iDevices with a novel content redaction engine and tool. The content redaction engine of some embodiments determines whether to redact content for output based on whether a user is biometrically verified. If they are, the redaction is removed as noted in our cover graphic.
According to a New York Times report published this week, a particularly nasty mobile malware campaign targeting Android users has hit between four million and 4.5 million Americans since January of 2013. In a mid-January security report published by Cisco, they claimed that ninety-nine percent of all mobile malware targeted Android devices. And while security firms have tried to sully Apple's iOS reputation for not having malware with reports about the recent Masque attack, Apple responded quickly. They also noted that they "…designed OS X and iOS with built-in security safeguards to help protect customers and warn them before installing potentially malicious software." This week the US Patent & Trademark Office published a patent application from Apple that reveals systems and methods for a security measure that prevents unauthorized calls from being made to protected functions of software. Apple describes embedding secrets to each function that can't be hacked.
On November 20, 2014, the US Patent & Trademark Office published a patent application from Apple that reveals a new invention that generally relates to using networked electronic devices like Apple iDevices and Macs as smoke detectors for your home. As part of a smart home system, Apple illustrates how future iDevices will act as smoke detectors and be able to automatically call 911 for emergency assistance. The system will be able to supply emergency services with information about how many occupants are currently in the home and in which rooms they're located in due to motion sensors embeded in Apple's mobile and stationary devices. Apple's HomeKit will be able to work with future third party dedicated forms of Fire Detectors as well so as to work in conjunction with Apple's new system. Interestingly Apple illustrates that the new system could actually be integrated into their upcoming Apple Watch or at least a future generation of it.
On November 6, 2014, the US Patent & Trademark Office published a patent application from Apple that reveals a possible new user interface mainly designed for future iDevice applications. A special aspect of this new UI design is that it involves the use of dynamic, moveable interface elements. As example's Apple points us to photo, map and mathematical applications that could use this new user interface though technically it could apply to any future application. The new UI is designed to include built-in tutorial and/or a quick help system to guide users in how to use a particular feature of a new application that they're not familiar with. This could easily be seen as something that Apple's developers will also be able to tap into in the future. In the end, it looks as though this is something that we could definitely see Apple bring to market in the future.
The US Patent & Trademark Office published two patent applications from Apple today that reveal their ongoing work regarding advanced haptics and new iOS interface elements and metaphors for consumers and the enterprise. At a basic level, Apple's advanced haptics invention may have played a role in Apple's new Apple Watch.
During Apple's latest Financial Conference Call Apple's CEO pointed out that Apple currently has 90% of the tablet market in education. Today, the US Patent & Trademark Office published a patent application from Apple that reveals a new Graphical User Interface for group reading environments such as the education market. The system uses an iPad (or MacBook) to allow students to follow a group reading session where teachers could grade them based on vocabulary, pronunciation, comprehension, emotion, speed, fluency, prosody and so much more. Apple's patent 6a noted above illustrates a group reading session starting.
On October 16, 2014, the US Patent & Trademark Office published a patent application from Apple that reveals a pop-up menu system for iDevices using pro apps like Apple's Numbers or Pages or Microsoft's Excel or Word that could be customized by the user. The interface will also be able to be used on a future iPad Plus or iPad Pro (whatever they brand it) using a physical keyboard accessory.
The US Patent and Trademark Office officially published a series of 40 newly granted patents for Apple Inc. today. In this particular granted patent brief we find that Apple has invented a tool for developers where there's a common "Makefile" that could be used to create software for any platform.
In February 2011 HP first introduced an innovative feature for their new TouchPad tablets running WebOS called "Touch to Share." HP Fans and industry pundits alike applauded them for their innovation. In that same month we posted a granted patent report that described something similar that Apple had been working on. Of course in typical Apple fashion, the concepts envisioned appeared to be far more creative as they implement gesturing with Physics Metaphors. In one example, as noted in our cover graphic, they introduced a metaphor mirroring the ability to "pour out" files from one device to another like pouring water. Today Apple was granted a third patent covering this possible future gesture for transferring files between two iOS devices and more.
On September 4, 2014, the US Patent & Trademark Office published a patent application from Apple that reveals a new visual reminder system for the iPhone that could incorporate pop-up maps as a handy reminder of the location of your appointment. Our report also provides you with links to several other mildly interesting patents published today covering varying technologies. One is about an interesting sapphire process (which we covered earlier in a European filing weeks ago) to strengthen the material. The others cover camera related technologies, integrated pressure sensors for displays and a way to make mobile device displays even lighter and brighter. The last one covers a possible new Maps UI that will use a new virtual reality gimmick allowing users to experience a form of X-Ray vision effect.
On August 21, 2014, the US Patent & Trademark Office published a patent application from Apple that reveals the addition of a new intelligent dimension to a future iOS Home Screen. Let's say that there's an app that you'll need to access quickly like an airline ticket that's currently buried in a folder on page 4 of your Home Screen. In the future, iOS will know to automatically bring that app or digital ticket up to your starting Home Page based on your proximity to the airport or concert hall so that there's no fumbling around at the gate. Although it's a simple idea, it represents the kind of convenience that we've just come to expect from Apple in making our everyday digital lives a little easier as time goes on.
Way before there was any hype about a Healthbook or HealthKit from Apple there was a patent application that we covered back in 2010 concerning a future iPhone with a seamlessly embedded heart rate monitor titled "Apple Takes a Giant Leap in Biometrics with Heart Sensors." This was one of the first indicators that Apple was exploring next generation sensors for the iPhone and other future wearables such Apple's EarPods which this patent covered specifically. Today, the US Patent Office published a few new Apple patent applications regarding health sensors – with the one noted above being revisited by Apple.
Last week the US Patent & Trademark Office published a patent application from Apple that revealed a new visual dialing method designed for your iPhone that could end audible menu-hell that we now have to deal with when calling a business such as our Cable Company, a bank, a utility company and so forth. Today when calling a business with your iPhone, you have to go through a maze of audio prompts to get you to the right department for assistance or to perform a simple task. This archaic system could one day be replaced with Apple's simple next-generation visual menu system so that businesses will be able to recognize that you're calling from a mobile device and send your iPhone a simple set of visual menu options so that you could determine the speed of the menu prompts that will get you to the right department quickly. The system is designed for businesses to set up via a cloud based service.