Apple currently has four patent-pending inventions covering an indoor location app in the works (01, 02, 03 & 04). Today the US Patent & Trademark Office published another indoor location based patent from Apple that discusses individual and chain store apps.
Apple's invention provides query completion suggestions and/or search results to a device of a user based on a location of the device. For example, when a user is within a store or within a threshold distance of the store, search results and/or query completion suggestions specific to that store may be of particular interest to the user. However, in order to ensure user/device privacy and anonymity, it may not be desirable to transmit identifying information, such as the location of the device, to a remote server (e.g., a third party and/or untrusted server), or storing such information on a remote server.
Apple's new system allows a user to receive query completion suggestions and/or search results relevant to (and/or targeted to) their particular location, such as within a store, without requiring the user to provide user identifying information and/or device identifying information to a remote server, such as a third party server. In this manner, the subject system preserves the privacy of the user while still providing the user with information relevant to their location.
Apple's patent FIG. 1 illustrates an example retail store in which an electronic device may implement their new indoor location system; FIG. 2 illustrates an example network environment for performing a search based on device location.
In one or more implementations, an iPhone may have installed one or more store applications respectively corresponding to one or more stores (e.g., a chain of retail stores). For example, the iPhone may install a store application "Store-A App" corresponding to retail store chain A (e.g., one or more stores), and/or may further install a store application "Store-B App" corresponding to a different (e.g., competing) retail store chain B (e.g., one or more stores).
Apple is currently applying their indoor mapping technology for Maps in airports across the globe before making their big push into Malls.
Inventors: John Hornkvist: Senior Software Engineering Manager for Spotlight/Search; and Anubhav M: Software Engineer.
Apple's patent application 20190121870 that was published today by the U.S. Patent Office was originally filed back in Q4 2017. Considering that this is a patent application, the timing of such a product to market is unknown at this time.
About Making Comments on our Site: Patently Apple reserves the right to post, dismiss or edit any comments. Those using abusive language or negative behavior will result in being blacklisted on Disqus.