Back in 2012 we reported on a surprising anti-Big Brother Surveillance patent that Apple was granted by the US Patent Office. At the time we noted that Apple's patent read like a science fiction novel borrowing from George Orwell's 1949 book titled "Nineteen Eighty-Four." It also had shades of the 1982 movie the "Blade Runner," where the Master Cloner invented a method of implanting false memories into clones so as to provide them with a confident self-image. Now leaping to last night's report from the Wall Street Journal we learn that a social-network furor has erupted over news that Facebook in 2012, conducted a massive psychological experiment on nearly 700,000 unwitting users. Society has all but accepted that governmental organizations and agencies like the NSA are capable of such deception and manipulation. Yet when we hear that Facebook, a somewhat respected social media pioneer has resorted to such tactics, we see abuse of power and privilege that's all for future monetary gain. There's absolutely no justification for this kind of study and it makes you wonder how many other tech companies are doing the very same thing under the guise of doing it for our benefit.
Yesterday at Samsung's Business Discovery Day in London, Jae Shin, VP of Samsung's Knox mobile security business group, was asked whether Samsung was worried about losing its early lead in the fledgling wearables market when Apple releases its long-rumoured iWatch. Shin argued that consumer are not so obsessed with brands anymore and now have the know-how and the resources to make a smart decision. Shin added that "Wearable devices don't need Apple's help to take off."
Earlier this week we posted a report titled "Bringing ABC's Live News to Apple TV is a Monumental Move." The timing of that news was a surprise though the idea of live-TV coming to Apple's iDevice wasn't. It was forecasted back in a 2006 patent application that was granted to them in 2012. Earlier this month at Apple's WWDC Craig Federighi pointed to several developments for gaming such as "Metal" that could now allow major gaming houses to release top games aimed for the PS4 and Xbox to come to Apple TV technically at the same time. Apple also introduced us to HomeKit during that same event and it's very possible that Apple could be thinking of integrating their new Home App right into Apple TV and finally bringing to market a true in-home digital hub that we've been waiting for. Is it a pipedream? Only time will tell.
Today Network World added a little more spark behind Apple's alleged "iWatch" device that may be released as early as this fall or sometime in 2015. Their report revealed that one of Apple's latest hires is Alex Hsieh – who was the Lead Software Engineer at Atlas Wearables. Alex is seen in the Atlas Wearables promotional video and in our last graphic set below. Alex was working on a next-generation fitness band which is due to launch sometime in the coming months. It was just a week ago that the Wall Street Journal claimed that their sources noted that Apple's mystery device could integrate no less than ten sensors. While today's revelation is rather small, it's still another piece of the "iWatch" puzzle that is slowly coming together.
According to a new Korean report published today, display industry sources have revealed that Samsung and LG Electronics are planning to roll out new smartphones with 5-inch flexible displays as early as this September. The more interesting of the two designs may be the one that Samsung is currently working on.
On June 26, 2014, the US Patent & Trademark Office published a patent application from Apple that reveals the development of an LED based keyboard. Although last month's report titled "Apple Rethinks the Keyboard with Gesture Controls & In-Key Displays to Support Pictograms, Symbols and Glyphs" was far more detailed than todays – it still goes to show us that Apple is continuing their work on this front. This particular invention also points to multitouch displays might be coming to future Macs.
For those who want to know what Google is up to lately, we present you with the full Google I/O keynote in the video above. The keynote covers such matters as Android Wear, Android Auto (that will compete with Apple's CarPlay), Android TV, Chromecast (and new apps for Android and iOS), Google Play, Google Fit, and more. Our report also covers more of Google's funny statistics and a few notable highlights that drew the attention of the press at this year's Google I/O.
Google's Sundar Pichai, senior vice president at Google, introduced their new Android One initiative at their annual Google I/O developer conference in California today. The new Android One hardware platform is designed primarily to assist OEM's who are selling entry level smartphones into emerging markets. Selling the next billion Android phones depends on this initiative taking flight.
There's been a lot of discussion in the Apple community over the years about how Google and specifically Samsung quote "shipments" vs usage or units sold. Well, Google presented a debatable theory about that very topic at Google I/O today that you might find interesting. I found it to be very entertaining.
The Supreme Court ruled Wednesday that police cannot go snooping through people’s cell phones without a warrant, in a unanimous decision that amounts to a major statement in favor of privacy rights. Police agencies had argued that searching through the data on cell phones was no different than asking someone to turn out his pockets, but the justices rejected that, saying a cell phone is more fundamental. The ruling amounts to a 21st century update to legal understanding of privacy rights.
Patently Apple has been consistently reporting on the myth that Samsung's S5 is a smash hit in various reports since April. Our most recent report posted last week was titled "Samsung's Galaxy S5 is Confirmed a Dud & May Hurt Financials." That particular report sent one Android fan known as "Evolved" into a spitting tirade. It's on record that that this fan tweeted us with this response: Why fucking post about Samsung on that Apple site? Biased liars. Stupid fucks!" Well, according to the Financial Times today, "Samsung Electronics has turned bearish on its second-quarter performance, with its chief financial officer saying he expects results to be "not that good" as rising competition stifles profit growth at the mobile division." I guess "Evolved" will now have to tweet Samsung's CFO and continue his rant.
WiLAN Sues Apple Over 4G Technologies While Mocking Apple's Simple Inventions and Pointing to Steve Jobs Views of Stealing Ideas
Canada's WiLAN has filed a patent infringement lawsuit against Apple alleging that Apple infringes five of their patents. The patent infringement lawsuit concerns Apple's alleged use of WiLAN's 4G and LTE technologies found in most of Apple's products. Over 130 companies including Samsung, HTC, LG, Motorola, Nokia and BlackBerry license WiLAN's technology. WiLAN invented this technology, so this isn't a case brought on by a patent troll. WiLAN notes in their complaint that they met with Apple on June 16 to iron out an agreement. Three days later, on June 19, rather than provide dates for a meeting, Apple initiated litigation against WiLAN, a Declaratory Judgment, in the Northern District of California involving the five 4G patents asserted in this action in a clear attempt at gamesmanship to remove this matter from this Court. WiLAN lashes out at Apple in their complaint before the court mocking Apple's litigation with Samsung for simpleton inventions such as "curved shape of the corners of the icons used in its displays." They also made the point that Steve Jobs stated in a PBS documentary entitled "Triumph of the Nerds," that "We have always been shameless about stealing great ideas." Noting Apple's actions, this is obviously going to be a bitterly fought battle to the end. This Report was updated at 9:40 AM PST and again at 11:15 PST
On May 20 we posted a report titled "Microsoft's New Surface Pro 3 Thinks it's a Notebook." We noted in our report that Microsoft's Corporate VP for Surface, Panos Panay, tried to make the case that the new Surface 3 was a better notebook than Apple's MacBook Air. That's when his presentation derailed for me but Panay is still stuck in that gear, if not obsessed with MacBook Air owners. In fact, he's now got Microsoft making you an offer that you can't refuse. Some will see this as a once in a lifetime deal while others will simply laugh it off. Either way, the deal is now on the table.
Starting Today, ABC News will be streaming live into US living rooms on Apple TV. ABC News on Apple TV features continuous live and on-demand programming from around the world. And best of all: it's free. While the new channel isn't available in Canada at this time, Apple's positive move to begin introducing "live" news channels on Apple TV is monumental.
Last Friday United States Magistrate Judge Paul S. Grewal ordered Samsung and their attorney Quinn Emanuel (QE) to pay Apple and Nokia all costs and fees incurred in litigating a motion regarding the leaking of confidential materials. The amount that is to be paid to Apple in the next 30 days is $893,825.77. The amount owed to Nokia is $1,145.027.95. Update: While "M" is a symbol for a "Thousand", it's also a symbol for a million. The byline has been changed to better reflect the reality of this report.
Apple Granted 52 Patents Today Covering a Dual Connector iPad, a Hybrid iPhone Display, a 3D Remote & Much More
The US Patent and Trademark Office officially published a series of 52 newly granted patents for Apple Inc. today. In this particular report we cover three main patent wins including one for a hybrid electronic paper and video display. We also cover five design patents and of course we wrap up this week's granted patent report with our traditional listing of the remaining granted patents that were issued to Apple today.
It's being reported that Apple will begin mass production of the next generation 4.7 and 5.5 inch iPhones in July. Considering that 40 percent of smartphones being sold in China today are those with displays that are over 5 inches, Apple's larger 5.5 inch model has the greatest potential of tapping into this new consumer pool come this fall.
Samsung Takes Top Spot in Global Mobile Telephony Patent Assignments in 2013 with Apple Missing the Top Ten
Samsung Electronics filed or bought the largest number of patents for chips, smart media and smartphones throughout last year, Thomson Reuters said Monday. This is quite contrary to the Androider's myth that Apple is the biggest patent filer. In fact, Apple didn't even make the top five patent filers globally and more importantly didn't make the top ten in the key area of mobile telephony.
According to a new report from China Times today, TSMC will be producing 120 million Touch IDs throughout 2014, which represents a growth of roughly 233% since last year. Supply chain sources have also indicated that the first batch of Touch IDs will start being shipped in early July. The increase in Touch ID production may either reflect Apple's move to introduce two new iPhones this fall in the form of 4.7 and 5.5 inch models or that Touch ID will may be coming to one or more models of their next generation iPads. We first reported on TSMC producing Touch ID assemblies for iPads back in early May.
A crowd of nearly 600 was in the waiting line Saturday morning when Apple's new Store opened in Madrid Spain. It's the second largest Apple Store in Europe (after Kurfürstendamm in Berlin), and has a staff of 125 employees. Once again, Apple didn't just open a simple brick and mortar shop, they opened another architectural beauty restoring an old historic building which took them over four long years to complete.
Hon Hai Precision Industry's Foxconn is reportedly recruiting over 100,000 people in mainland China to produce Apple's upcoming iPhone 6, which would mark the largest hiring spree in Hon Hai's history. If true, the supply chain rumor would be confirming that Apple is in fact planning to release not one, but two different sized iPhone 6 models for this fall.
Earlier today our Patently Mobile site published a report about new trademark filings for Samsung and Google. While Samsung is seeking trademarks for a "Gear Store" and a possible future wearable device called "Gear VR," Google filed trademarks relating to Project Tango. The twist that was found while reporting on this is that Project Tango is now headed for future 7" Android tablets. Project Tango was originally designed for an upcoming smartphone that could debut as early as this week during their Google I/O developer conference.
Today, the US Patent & Trademark Office officially published Apple's latest trademark application for "OS X Yosemite," under application number 86312402. The trademark covers, as expected, "computer software, namely, computer operating system software." Apple usually files for new trademarks within days after announcing a new product and/or service. Apple legal has been glacially slow this time around to file for any of the new features that Apple introduced at their World Wide Developer Conference held at the beginning of the month.
In February we reported that Apple was offering Indian consumers with the ability to test drive an iPhone for a two week period for mind blowing cost of only $16US as a restocking price. Such marketing was first introduced by Apple in 1984 when they offered consumers the ability to take home a Macintosh computer to test out. Apple is now extending this idea to T-Mobile in an even better deal for their customers.
Beyond the First Wave of Health Apps and Sensors Comes the Second Wave of Biotech Features for Displays
According to an industry report, convergence displays based on biotechnology are now in development. As biotechnology is applied to displays, simply watching television will be able to remove face wrinkles and give the effect of basking in the sun. TVs and tablet PCs will evolve into multi-devices for health. The first biotechnology features coming to displays are expected to kill or reduce touchscreen bacteria.
Just last month we reported that "Samsung S5 Early Adopters Lose Big Time as the New S5-Prime Smartphone is Close to Release." One month later and the news is out that Samsung's new "S5 LTE-A" smartphone will deliver the very Quad HD display that North American Android fans were hoping for. Those eager Android fans just got royally screwed over by Samsung.
Future Smartphone Cameras may use a Micro Electrochromic Iris made from Smart Glass Eliminating the use of Actuators
Today, an Apple patent application regarding an Electro-Active Polymer Actuator also known as an artificial muscle came to light. While Apple's camera based invention is to replace older styled mechanical actuators, a new technology is around the corner that will do one better. A European report published today states that a small, low-powered camera component made from a "smart glass" material has been created by a group of researchers in Europe, with the hope of inspiring the next generation of smartphone cameras.
According to a new rumor report from Reuters, Taiwan's Quanta Computer Inc. will start mass production of Apple Inc's first smartwatch in July, according to a source familiar with the matter, as the tech giant tries to prove it can still innovate against rival Samsung.
Apple Patents Reveal a New Camera Electro-Active Polymer Actuator and more about Apple's ID Technology
On June 19, 2014, the US Patent & Trademark Office published patent applications from Apple related to advancing Apple cameras for iDevices and Macs along with another original Touch ID patent that Apple acquired from Authentec. Apple's camera related patent is about advancing the actuator of an autofocus feature. While it's mildly interesting, it's the use of the term "artificial muscle" that makes it sound so incredibly futuristic, but really isn't. Apple notes that the term simply relates to electro-active polymer actuators which have been around for some time. Apple's use of it in a camera module isnt' new either as noted here and here. When this technology is applied to an artificial robotic hand, for instance, it could be understood why they use the term artificial muscle as seen here. And finally, a second patent of mild interest published today relates to one that Apple acquired from Authentec that presents the invention behind Touch ID authentication that focused on the biometrics being imlplemented into a smartphone Home Button.
On June 19, 2014, the US Patent & Trademark Office published a patent application from Apple that reveals that well before Apple acquired Beats Music, they were already working on over-the-ear headphones. Specifically, Apple's invention relates to a hybrid adaptive headphone having active noise control capability and passive noise control capability. Apple is on a roll of late regarding new over-the-ear headphones features. At the end of May we posted a patent report titled "Apple to Add Presence Sensors to EarPods & Future Beats Headsets."
Apple tweaks their Embedded Heart Rate Monitor Invention while introducing new Health Related Alarms
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.
Apple's invents a Futuristic Frequency Sensor and Magnifier Application for the iPhone that could be Very Cool
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 June 4 we reported that Amazon announced that they would unveil their first smartphone during a June 18 event. To differentiate their phone in a sea of new smartphones coming to market later this year, Amazon was aiming to wow consumers with the world's first 3D user interface that would use head tracking technology. A video teaser was included that was to build excitement for the new phone. Well, today is June 18 and Amazon's CEO Jeff Bezos did in fact deliver their new phone branded the Fire Phone. Update 12:50 PM PST: see an Amazon Video Link to the 3D effect or dynamic perspective UI.
A Luxembourg patent troll by the name of Enterprise Systems Technologies S.a.r.l. has filed a patent infringement lawsuit against Apple. The patent infringement lawsuit claims that Apple is infringing on five patents that they acquired from Siemens.
Yesterday while reporting on the EU and South Korea working together to establish next generation 5G network standards, we stated that "with the advent of so many new video services exploding onto the market of late, I'm sure there's pressure to expedite the move to 5G networks. However, let's hope that before 5G networks arrive that we'll be closer to finding Federal support for Net Neutrality or else we'll be paying through the nose to get our hands on faster services. Well, there new information on that front today. Democratic congressional leaders led by Sen. Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) have introduced legislation titled "The Online Competition and Consumer Choice Act" that they say will ensure the Internet stays accessible to all online services and Net users and free of so-called "fast lanes." The goal is to help prevent the creation of a two-tiered Internet system and ensure that startups, entrepreneurs, and consumers all have equal access to the Internet.
A new study by Chitika for June 2014 shows us that Apple's iOS trumped Android again when measuring web traffic in the US and Canada. It's another study to show that developers creating cool web apps should consider iOS first for the best return on their investment.
Apple has just introduced a new entry level iMac with a 21.5 inch display starting at $1,099. The ultra-thin iMac offers a Core i5 processor with Turbo Boost Speeds up to 2.7 GHz. It's Apple most affordable iMac yet.
On Monday we posted a report titled "Samsung's Galaxy S5 is Confirmed a Dud & May Hurt Financials." In that report we noted that Korea's UDN reported that Samsung's supply chain sources were stating that Samsung's goal was to ship 21 million Galaxy S5 units this quarter and that they'll likely ship closer to 15 million which is a 25% target miss. That would be a huge miss. Now Korean security firms have gone negative on Samsung. A new Korean report published this morning states that "Samsung Electronics' profitability is expected to deteriorate in the second quarter of this year, unlike the previous prediction."
At the moment it doesn't appear that Apple has any interest in challenging the Google Glass product any time soon, which leaves Microsoft as the only one left that could put some serious pressure on Google in the next year or so. Last week a new Microsoft patent came to light at the US Patent Office describing Microsoft's ambitious invention of building a Glass product focused on new multitouch sensor technology.