Apple Files Patents & Trademarks Covering a Camera Filter, iPhone Headset, Surround Panner, Flyover & Turn-by-Turn Logo
On July 5, 2012, the US Patent & Trademark Office published a series of patent applications from Apple covering a wide range of technologies. In particular, our report briefly touches on inventions relating to a digital signal filter for iOS device cameras, an iPhone wireless headset and Apple's Logic Pro's Surround Panner. For security fans, there's a specific one covering in-place encryption. In addition to patents, it was revealed by the US Patent and Trademark Office that Apple has filed for two iOS 6 related trademarks covering their 3D photo-realistic navigation feature called "Flyover" and their new Maps + Compass Logo reflecting its upcoming "Turn by Turn" feature.
Invention #1: Digital Signal Filter
In order to have a thinner smartphone body, Apple states that the camera module isn't mounted directly on a main logic board but rather may be connected to the main logic board and the clock signal generator through a flexible circuit. In this case, the radiation noise of the harmonic components of the clock signal and the digital data signal may be released from the flexible circuit and interfere with radio communications.
On the other hand, radio communications frequencies may be picked up by the flexible circuit and interfere with the camera clock signal and the digital data signal that is transmitted to and from the camera module through the flexible circuit.
Apple's invention solves this problem with a passive filter circuit that could be used to attenuate an undesired frequency component in a digital signal.
Apple's camera related patent application was originally filed in Q1 2011 by inventors Scott Mullins, Timothy Johnston and Yehonatan Perez and published today by the US Patent and Trademark Office. For more information, see patent application '433.
Invention #2: Wireless Communication Headset with Wired and Wireless Modes
Apple invention relates to a wireless communication headset having both wired and wireless modes. The wireless headset can include a headset connector assembly that can be coupled to a cable connector of a cable, which can in turn be connected to a telephone. When the wireless headset is coupled to the telephone, it can advantageously be operable to exchange audio information with the telephone through the cable, receive electrical power from the telephone through the cable, or both. In addition, the cable connector can advantageously be coupled to the wireless headset without obstructing airflow to a microphone that is located in the headset connector assembly, through use of apparatus of the invention located on the cable connector, such as an acoustic tunnel, a microphone-speaker pair, or a microphone that is coupled to control circuitry operable to disable the microphone of the headset.
Apple's patent application was originally filed in Q4 2011 by inventors John Tang and Brett Alten and published today by the US Patent and Trademark Office. For more information, see patent application '964.
Invention #3: Multi-Channel Sound Panner
Apple's invention relates to a Logic Pro's multi-channel surround panner and multi-channel sound panning. The multi-channel surround panner allows the operator to manipulate a source audio signal, and view how the manipulated source signal will be heard by a listener at a reference point in a sound space. The panner user interface (UI) displays a separate visual element for each channel of source audio. According to Apple, a typical application involves an operator that would be in a studio.
Apple's Other Patent Applications Published Today
Other patent applications from Apple that were published today includes one that provides a video coding/decoding system that builds implied reference frames from a plurality of reference frames developed during coding; another that covers a method for adapting polling time intervals between a mobile wireless device and a remote server in a wireless network; still another that covers graphical user interfaces and digital video editing; and finally, one that covers encrypting storage devices and more specifically to in-place encryption of a storage device in a computer while the user continues to use the computer.
In addition to the patent applications presented in today's report, the US Patent and Trademark Office did publish two older continuation patents dating back to between 2006 and 2007. The continuation patents that we list below are specifically referenced as such under the section titled "Cross-Reference to Related Applications." Generally speaking, continuation patents represent tweaks made to patent claims in an effort to get the patents granted by the USPTO and don't represent any noteworthy new development from the original patent filing. Here are today's continuation patents should you wish to review them:
1. Electrical Components Coupled to Circuit Boards (relates to iPod) – Originally filed on Sep. 11, 2006; 2. Bend Switch for Wired Headset – Originally filed on Jan. 5, 2007
Apple Trademark Filings: Flyover and New Turn by Turn Logo
Apple has filed for their new Maps + Compass feature trademark called Flyover. Flyover will debut with iOS 6 this fall.
Apple filed their trademark filing under International Class 039 which covers the following: GPS navigation services; travel route planning; transportation and traffic information; providing a web site and an online searchable computer database with travel, tourism, geographic, and destination information, maps, travel route planning, transportation, and traffic information, and driving and walking directions; providing interactive maps; travel information and guide services; electronic storage of data, text, images, audio, and video; storage services for archiving electronic data; information and consultation in connection therewith.
Apple's second trademark filing that's worth noting this morning is their new Maps + Compass logo representing the "Turn by Turn" functionality coming in iOS 6.
The new logo is covered by International Classes 039 as noted above, plus 009 which covers the following: Computers; handheld digital electronic devices and software related thereto; global positioning system (GPS) and navigation devices; computer software, including computer software for travel, travel planning, navigation, travel route planning, geographic, destination, transportation and traffic information, driving and walking directions, customized mapping of locations, street atlas information, electronic map display, and destination information.
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