On July 10, 2014, the US Patent & Trademark Office published a patent application from Apple that reveals Apple's intent to reduce the number of openings at the bottom of an iPhone. The focus of this invention is to reinvent the audio jack port so that when a user isn't using the audio jack port, audio can be sent through that same port instead of a dedicated speaker. The new combination port may support a lightning connector.
On July 3, 2014, the US Patent & Trademark Office published a patent application from Apple that describes an invention related to audio and more specifically to a magnetically biased electromagnet for audio applications. While Apple's invention will be appealing to true audiophiles who will appreciate Apple's determination to bring high-fidelity sound to ever smaller mobile devices, it's the side effects of this invention that may be the real news here. Imagine Jony Ive creating a future iPhone that didn't have to include external audio grilles. Imagine an iPhone that eliminated that design distraction. Considering that Apple may eliminate the headphone jack in future iPhones as well, iPhone designs are headed for cleaner, slicker form factors. In fact, Apple has already provided us with several examples of possible future design form factors for the iPhone that indeed eliminate both audio grilles and the headphone jack as seen here and here. The other side benefit of eliminating both the audio grilles and headphone jack as it allows Apple to design an iPhone that is waterproof, a point that Apple clearly makes in their current patent application.
On June 19, 2014, the US Patent & Trademark Office published a patent application from Apple that reveals a futuristically advanced iPhone feature and capability. In the future, Apple's iPhone may be able to project an emulated keyboard, keypad, mouse, trackpad, or a game controller onto a table top surface and more.
On March 02 we posted a report titled "Samsung Invents Workaround to Apple's Pinch-to-Zoom Patent." In that report we presented Samsung's proposed single movement gesture that would replace the traditional two-finger pinch-to-zoom feature that they copied from Apple. Samsung was found guilty of patent infringement on that very feature, as we noted in last week's report. Today, we discovered a new Apple patent that was published in Europe on Thursday that introduces us to a new single-gesture as well. The gesture will be able to perform zooming functions as well as other commands for those wanting to operate their iPhones using only one hand.
On March 6, 2014, the US Patent & Trademark Office published a patent application from Apple titled "Wi-Fi Credential Sharing using Images." Setting up your iDevices to a new wireless network at coffee shops or other entertainment hubs is time consuming. Wouldn't it be nice to just tell Siri to set it up for you and be done with it? Well, Apple's invention covers just that and more.
This morning Patently Apple discovered a killer patent application from Apple that was published in Europe. Apple's killer invention describes flexible wraparound displays for a possible future iPhone and/or other devices. The patent describes sapphire and transparent displays used in a form factor created by an alumina powder liquid-metal process. Apple further describes some very interesting applications taking advantage of this kind of continuous wraparound display that could be ideal for a future wristband computer that we reported on earlier this year. Without a doubt, this patent application is one of the best of the year – so check it out.
On October 22, 2013, the US Patent and Trademark Office officially published another killer Steve Jobs patent regarding the iPhone that Apple is likely to use in future litigation. One of the key patents regarding the iPhone that Samsung and Google have tried to invalidate at all costs was reaffirmed by the US Patent Office last week. The patent was known as the "Steve Jobs patent." Patent specialist and blogger Florian Mueller made it known that last week's patent reaffirmation represented a major victory for Apple and the beginning of a massive uphill battle for Samsung. Today, Apple was granted a secondary major "Steve Jobs patent" that builds on the first patent by covering a "Graphical User Interface" and more. If last week's reaffirmed patent was considered a major victory for Apple against Samsung, then the second one is bound to pound Samsung o the mat even faster.
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.
When Apple revealed the iPhone 5 last year, many were confused as to why Apple didn't include NFC technology. Apple's VP of Worldwide Marketing Phil Schiller stated at the time that it wasn't clear that NFC was the solution to any current problem. That was a nice misdirection Phil, really. Because as Phil was saying that, Apple had already filed for a wild fingerprint sensor/NFC patent that he was fully aware of. Patently Apple discovered this new patent application in Europe yesterday. The patent filing details an incredible fingerprint scanner with advanced integrated NFC circuitry that will deliver features that no one saw coming! When Phil Schiller gave the Mac faithful a peek at the coming Mac Pro tower this fall, he blurted out: Apple "can't innovate anymore – My Ass!" Well, it appears that Apple may show the world a little more innovation Apple-style next week when they unveil the iPhone 5S. It may even include a newly designed Home Button with an integrated fingerprint scanner and much more. Report Updated 2:30 PM PST. Report Updated September 09, 2013, 6 PM MST
On August 22, 2013, the US Patent & Trademark Office published a series of 20 original patent applications from Apple today excluding 12 continuation patents. In this report we cover four mildly interesting inventions. The first details Apple's lightning connector exhaustively. The second covers automating Apple's iPhone status sharing feature so users won't have to set it up in the future. A third patent covers a new injection molding system for creating parts for Apple iDevices faster and cost effectively. And lastly we link you to a new patent application covering technology relating to the next iPhone cellular standard that's in the works called LTE-Advanced.
On this holiday July fourth, the US Patent & Trademark Office published a patent application from Apple that reveals a new speaker design aimed primarily for iDevices such the iPad and iPhone. This is Apple's third attempt at trying to find the right design for an advanced sound system for smaller computers. Apple's first design surfaced in May 2012 which was followed by a more elaborate design in March of this year. All three designs are aimed at delivering much richer audio for music, video and as an iPhone speakerphone.
On May 30, 2013, the US Patent & Trademark Office published a patent application from Apple that reveals Apple's gaze detection technology. It should be noted that Apple's current patent is a divisional patent which means that Apple is breaking this aspect of their 2008 parent patent out as an individual patent. Technically, Apple had this technology in a patent prior to any other competitor including Samsung which actually implemented it first in their Galaxy S4 smartphone earlier this year. Apple also added gaze technologies to a January patent in context to an HDTV related patent and the likes of Sony and BlackBerry are working on similar features. Today, when you put your iPhone to your face the display is turned off. This is one of the technologies found in Apple's gaze detection patent. In the future, gaze technology will be able to stop a video when you look away or stop your tunes from playing based on this gaze detection feature. At the end of the day, Apple's gaze detection technology is really more about conserving power than it is about providing a flashy gimmick.
On May 09, 2013, the US Patent & Trademark Office published a patent application from Apple that reveals one of the next chapters for Apple's iPhone. Today's patent reveals an innovative concept that is designed to help users control their incoming calls and voicemail by simply swiping their finger over the external camera lens. It will control replay and fast forwarding of voicemail. In addition, the new methodology will also enhance one handed navigation of web pages, documents, a contact list or your iTunes library by simply swiping the camera lens in different swiping motion combinations. The majority of this patent was first reported on back in February 2010 under the title "Cool New Finger Swiping Camera Controls coming to iPhone & iPad." You can obtain more details and patent graphics from that report. Apple is adding one distinct addition to their original invention by adding general page scrolling.
On April 25, 2013, the US Patent & Trademark Office published a patent application from Apple that generally relates to future iPhones being able to locate your vehicle in a multi-tiered parking lot. In fact, Apple states that a "parking location" can be any place where a vehicle can be parked, stored, or docked. For example, in the case of a boat, a parking location can refer to a berth in a marina; in the case of an aircraft, a parking location can refer to a location at a municipal airport (e.g., outdoors or in a hangar). The vehicle can go beyond a car and it could be useful in trying to find a bike that you've parked. This new parking system application is likely a sub-system of a broader application. Part one of Apple's future automotive-application was covered in our first patent report of the day titled "Apple Reveals Advanced Automotive Access & Control System." It's pretty clear that Apple's acquisition of WifiSLAM will definitely play a role in the development of this application.