An exciting new coded magnetic fastening component design from Apple has surfaced in Canada's Industrial Designs Database this morning. The database states that it was publically published on March 22, 2012. The new design is listed under classifications that cover such consumer products as a remote control, telecommunications housings and more. A portion of the design resembles Apple's January patent figure for a future MacBook Pro docking station with inductive charging capabilities. While we can't confirm which of the products this component is headed for today, we can certainly state that it's for a product beyond the iPad Smart Cover. Apple's latest revelation is most interesting indeed.
To close out March, Apple has filed for a new communications icon in Europe that covers Mail, Calendar and SMS in one unique live combo icon. The new icon is associated with Apple's Notification Center. Apple's trademark application 010765485 is shown to have been filed under International Class 009 covering such things as "computer software for the redirection of messages, Internet e-mail, and/or other data to one or more electronic handheld devices," and more. While the icon is used to identify the Notification Center, it should also be used as a convenient icon for our iOS devices.
In late January we told you that we were under construction and that there would be some problems along the way. At the moment we're working on our RSS Subscription update which is causing a clear mix up with our spin-off blog Patent Bolt. We hope to have this corrected by sometime next week. We appreciate your patience during this update.
Earlier today we introduced Apple's 3D Avatar App which covered a basic overview of the new application in the works. Now a second patent application has surfaced and it actually shows that the app is already running on an iPad! We have the screenshot to prove it. The new patent application focuses on how the app will work with color palettes and more. The big news however is that the new 3D Avatar App is in its final stages of development and that's very cool. Evidently phase-one of the application is geared for the younger crowd, but other editions could be in the works as discussed in our first report today. One of the 3D characters in this Avatar App that we illustrate in our report has an Apple T-Shirt on. It makes you wonder if Apple is planning to debut this 3D Avatar app alongside a cool new Apple based game of sorts to kick this off just right. At the end of the day, Apple is in the final stages of a great new app for the iPad.
Last week Apple's patent application for an advanced TV remote was a bit of a stunner and the news about Apple's future HDTV keeps hitting the news. Just yesterday we learned of the Foxconn-Sharp alliance that's key to ramping up HDTV production for Apple's TV in the future. The day before that we learned of Apple being granted a patent for multi-touch skins that could wrap around a future TV remote so that controls could reside on the front, back or sides. Today, a new patent application was published by the US Patent and Trademark Office that provides us with a little more information about their new remote. This time around Apple details the remote's "learning system" that will always keep it up to date with the latest features via iCloud. While it's not an earth shattering invention by itself, it's all part and parcel of Apple's basket of all things Apple TV. The more we learn about their future HDTV system through patents, the better we'll understand their grander vision. This very much reminds me of the ramp up of patents in 1996, the year prior to the iPhone's debut. The buzz and anticipation surrounding the iPhone was "heart-thumpingly-insane" and the late Steve Jobs simply hit it out of the park for us. Time will tell if Tim Cook and Phil Schiller can engineer that same kind of buzz for Apple's HDTV – but one thing is for sure: they're off to a great start.
Apple has invented a killer 3D imaging camera that will apply to both still photography and video. The new cameras in development will utilize new depth-detection sensors such as LIDAR, RADAR and Laser that will create stereo disparity maps in creating 3D imagery. Additionally, the cameras will use advanced chrominance and luminance Sensors for superior color accuracy. And if that wasn't enough, the new cameras will not only include facial recognition but also facial gesturing recognition. Intel discussed the coming 3D revolution back in 2010 and it appears that Apple wants to be one of the first to introduce this killer 3D camera. While others may have beaten Apple to market first, the technology described in today's invention will definitely provide iOS devices with the ability to view killer 3D images that could only be appreciated on Apple's "Resolutionary" Retina Display. Apple's resolutionary experience has only begun. With the ability to view stunning 3D imagery, photos and videos on our new iPad displays, the resolutionary experience is only going pop our brains even further.
Apple certainly has a fascination for avatar creation apps of late. In the last year or so they've invented several interesting avatar related apps including one for a very sophisticated Personal Shopping app for the desktop and another covering Advanced Avatar Editing for the iPhone. In today's latest patent application, Apple reveals a new application in the making that will primarily be used for avatar creation, though Apple does clarify that they may use the underlying technology in other professional applications. On one hand it's like Photo Booth on steroids and on the other hand it's definitely being aimed at the 3D video game market. In either case it'll be a blast to play with on an iPad. In fact, Apple notes that this app could eventually apply to next generation displays that include "movable," heads-up and three-dimensional (e.g., holographic) systems. Now that caught my attention.
Yesterday, Apple was granted a very interesting and important patent regarding a very specific TV Display technology. The patent basically related to Apple's advancement of a little known technology called Fringe Field Switching (FSS). Apple's research pushed the technology so that it could now power a large HDTV. Previous versions of FSS couldn't accommodate such large displays. The underlying technology is an off-shoot of IPS called S-IPS. It's a technology that provides superior performance and color gamut with high luminosity. IPS technology is currently being used in Apple's iMac and the patent for IPS is held by Sharp. This was one of the key points that surfaced in a news report out Taiwan today that basically confirms that the Foxconn – Sharp deal directly equates to a future Apple HDTV.
On March 28, 2012, the US Patent & Trademark Office officially published Apple's registered trademark status for the iTunes logo. Apple officially filed for the iTunes logo on June 17, 2010. The iTunes logo is protected under a series of International Classes which includes coverage for such matters as social networking, telecom, retail and entertainment services. While Apple's CEO Tim Cook is off to China to clear up a few issues including the iPad trademark, he could at least be relieved to know that their all-important iTunes logo is now legally theirs. Well, at least in the US that is.
Today marks the day that Apple takes another leap forward in multi-touch technology. Apple has just won a knock out Multi-Touch Skin technology that will allow Apple to create next generation devices that are multi-dimensional in nature like a multi-touch sphere or a TV remote that has multiple touch areas for different controls. Apple could license the technology to car companies for creating multi-touch skin based steering wheels that could be responsive to gestures to turn the radio on or answer the phone for hands free operation. It could apply to sporting apparatus or even on guitar frets so as to provide feedback to a music analysis program. If Apple gave their competitors a headache in court with their traditional Multi-Touch patents, then they're competitors are going to need a lot more Tylenol once they realize what Apple has just won: Boom!
The US Patent and Trademark Office officially published a series of nineteen newly granted patents for Apple Inc. today. Amongst this latest lot were three design patents. Two of them were posthumously awarded to the late, great, Steve Jobs. For those who were fond of Steve Jobs, it's a little reminder of his passion for design. Steve Jobs and Apple's distinguishable class still lead the way in a world bent on copycat designs.
The US Patent and Trademark Office officially published a series of nineteen newly granted patents for Apple Inc. today. One of the patents that stood out from the crowd this morning relates to a high refresh rate LCD called FFS that Apple clearly states is suited for a TV. In fact, Apple's technology advances FFS so that it could work with large screen HDTVs, as previous versions of FSS couldn't accommodate such large displays. The technology is an off-shoot of IPS called S-IPS. It's a technology that provides superior performance and color gamut with high luminosity. IPS technology is currently being used in Apple's iMac – which stems from this patent.
There's been a lot of buzz over Apple's proposal for a future miniature SIM card. Competitors like Motorola, Research in Motion and Nokia are trying to stop it. The Financial Times stated in their recent report that "one person with knowledge of the committee" said that the "Apple-backed nano-SIM could require a "drawer" to protect it." Today, Apple has been granted their second patent regarding this proposed "drawer" concept and it's because the drawer or ejectable tray could accommodate not only a nano SIM but also an Integrated Circuit Card which is at the heart of Apple's iWallet. A variant of Apple's design could include a tray that accommodates both a Nano SIM card and an Integrated Circuit Card. So now you know a little more of the importance of the Nano SIM card story that Apple is proposing to the European Telecommunications Standards Institute (ETSI).
HTC is a well-respected Android smartphone OEM whose Thunderbolt and Evo 3D designs ranked in the top 5 last Christmas. But in this new age of smartphones, a design could live or die in a single quarter. Being different counts and HTC thinks that catering to multimedia users of YouTube, music videos, movies, TV shows and home movies may pay off. Their latest design, as noted in our cover graphic, delivers new multiple speaker configurations and a superior back stand design. What's odd about this invention is that it's without traditional wireless broadband detailing associated with a smartphone. Which makes me wonder if this design isn't really a future iPod touch Challenger? With Google ramping up Google Play, could HTC be preparing such a beast? Read More
A new patent application from Apple this morning shows us that they're looking at delivering a little more buzz to future iOS devices. Then again, it could be a pulse, vibration and/or other sensation because what's being described here is advanced haptics. The buzz before the launch of the "new iPad" was that Apple was going to introduce haptics from Senseg that would give users the ability to actually feel textures on their new Resolutionary Retina Display. I was stunned at the quality of the Retina display and I would have flipped if they would have added this feature. But it wasn't meant to be, just yet. Apple first introduced the idea of bringing haptics to the iPhone a year ago and today's patent sheds a little more light on the subject. Advanced haptics will freak us out at the realism it could bring to science books, artwork, photography – and yes, games. Advanced Haptics could very well end up being a game changer for the senses, to be sure. With a little patience, we'll one day have our cake and eat it too.
As rumors swirl and dance about in the blogosphere about Apple's coming HDTV, an Apple patent application pops up just in time to tease us about some of the possible new features that their TV remote may offer. While some of the features may apply to Apple's own HDTV, Apple's planned invasion of this market means attacking the entire market which includes TV's already in the marketplace today. One of Apple's wild new universal remote features works like this: you take a photo of your current TV remote and it sends it to iCloud for analysis. It then sends a "virtual copy" of your remote, functionality and all, to your iPhone. You're now able to control your current TV with Apple's advanced universal remote and enjoy all of Apple's TV remote features and likely tie-in products and services. Is that wild enough for you?
On March 21, 2012, the US Patent & Trademark Office published Apple's latest trademark applications for Siri's stylized microphone logo. Apple has filed six applications for Siri's logo in the US and a single application in Europe under several key International Classes covering such matters as online social networking services, business services, telecommunications, voice recognition, reservation services and more. On another front, a new Class Action lawsuit has been filed against Apple over Siri. One of the five counts listed in this new Class Action involves Apple's alleged misleading iPhone 4S ads featuring Siri. Our report covers the basics of this new case while questioning whether or not this new trend of filing consecutive Class Action lawsuits against Apple is really coincidental.
In early March Apple was granted a patent for a never before seen patent regarding Apple's forthcoming iWallet. The patent focused on parental controls for an iWallet and made a connection to a vague iTunes application and/or methodology. Today, another major component of Apple's iWallet was revealed in yet another granted patent. Today we learn about major security measures that the iWallet will employ and see more of the iTunes financial app that is temporarily being dubbed "MobilePay." The app takes on the appearance of a convenient tab found in iTunes, just like it is today for your apps, music or photos. Today's report fills you in on the latest features that Apple is thinking of bringing to the iWallet along with a great number of screenshots of various iWallet functions. If future electronic commerce with Apple's iWallet is a topic of interest to you, then you're going to enjoy this read.
The US Patent and Trademark Office officially published a series of seventeen newly granted patents for Apple Inc. today. In our first report of the day we covered a design win for Apple's Shanghai Store. In our second report of the day we focus entirely on Apple's first coded magnet patent win as it relates to their iPad Smart Cover. Apple officially introduced the iPad Smart Cover a year ago and the first patent about the iPad Smart Cover surfaced in December 2011. Kicking off 2012 we were able to view Apple's dramatic overview of their coded magnet technology which provided us with a peak of what could be in the pipeline for this promising technology. While Apple has received their first coded magnet patent today, it certainly won't be their last.
Apple has many flagship stores in high profile locations around the world such as New York, Beijing, London, Paris, Montreal, Chicago, Sydney and Zurich. Today, the US Patent and Trademark Office granted Apple a design patent for their flagship Shanghai Apple Store which opened its doors in September 2010. One of the designers credited for this incredible architecture is the late Apple CEO Steve Jobs.
It came to light in 2008 that an Apple research team was working on a visual headset for the iPod. In recent months news has surfaced that a next generation super high res micro OLED display is ready to support new visual headsets coming to market later this year. The stunning miniature displays pack quite the punch with a resolution of 2560 x 2048. Since that news, we've reported on a Sony research team working on a video headset for a future PlayStation while noting that Google may want in on this new market as well. While the race is clearly on to get the first commercially successful video headset to market, Patent Bolt has discovered that Microsoft has been secretly working on a video headset since September 2010. A New Microsoft patent reveals that they've been working two styles of headset. The first relates to an aviation styled helmet aimed at Xbox gamers while the second resembles a pair of sunglasses for use with smartphones, MP3 players and other future devices. With Microsoft's success with Kinect for gaming and beyond, it would appear to me that they might just have the edge in this race. Read More at Patent Bolt
China's Hong Kong IP Office has officially published a series of eleven newly registered design patents for Apple's retail store stands noted in our cover graphic. As you'll see, the official description of the retail-stands in the registered documents is pretty skimpy: "Stand as well as a combination of a stand and electronic device." No technical details were provided for public consumption.
A Washington DC Communications Consulting firm known as Trans Video Electronics is suing Apple for video distribution over the iTunes Store network. The same patents in this case were used in a prior case against Sony. In October 2011, Sony won their case against Trans Video Electronics Ltd. who was suing them for video distribution technology used in the PlayStation Network. I guess some believe in the old adage that "If at first you don't succeed, try, try again.
On March 16, 2012 the US Patent & Trademark Office published Apple's latest trademark application for "Apple Configurator" under application 85563555. Apple filed their trademark to cover "computer software used to configure multiple digital electronic devices." The new Apple Configurator, which was only released on March seventh, is a free App from the App Store. Apple Configurator was designed to make it easy for IT departments to mass configure and deploy iPhone, iPad, and iPod touch in a business, institution or school. As the new iPad launches today, I suspect that many of them will be marching directly into more offices around the world, and Apple Configurator is going to make that process much easier.
On March 15, 2012, the US Patent & Trademark Office published a patent application from Apple that refines an older 2008 patent on using Ultrasonic bonding in products like the 2009 metal back iPhone and current iPods. Apple may have refined the process of ultrasonic bonding in their latest Apple TV and iPad designs where it's necessary to bring metal and plastic together to save on costs and to keep the devices lighter.