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A Major Patent Update Indicates that Apple has Prepared Apple Pencil to work with their Calendar App on iPhone & iPad

1 COVR IPHONE APPLE PENCIL

 

In 2015 Apple filed for a patent relating to Apple Pencil being used on a future iPhone, a patent that was granted in 2017 and again in July 2019. To clarify, Apple pointed to their patent figure 7A which presented an iPhone as presented below, and stated: Exemplary embodiments of portable multifunctional devices include, without limitation, the iPhone, iPod Touch and iPad devices from Apple Inc. of Cupertino, Calif.

 

2 APPLE PENCIL WITH IPHONE

 

Apple Pencil being an exclusive tool for the iPad made sense originally because it catered to artists of all kinds. Shifting gears for Apple Pencil to be used on an iPhone requires that it goes beyond supporting artists to supporting every day applications like Messages, Calendar, Mail and more. As you will soon learn, Apple has shifted the focus of their 2015 to using Apple Pencil for iOS Calendar app. A sign that Apple is paving the way for Apple Pencil to become a viable tool for iPhone.

 

Today the US Patent & Trademark Office published a continuation patent from Apple relating to invention. Continuation patents allow Apple to add specific features or properties to their original patent that they wish to further refine and define in order to better protect their invention overall.

 

Firstly, Apple has changed the title of the patent which is revealing:

 

Original Patent Title: "Devices and methods for providing an indication as to whether a message is typed or drawn on an electronic device with a touch-sensitive display"

 

New Patent Title: "Devices and Methods for Creating Calendar Events Based on Hand-Drawn Inputs at an Electronic Device with a Touch-Sensitive Display"

 

Clearly Apple's continuation patent is a major shift on emphasizing "hand-drawn inputs" and dropping "a message typed." This shifts the emphasis on using Apple Pencil on an iPhone (or iPad) for Apple's Messages app and Calendar app (at minimum).

 

Apple's patent FIG. 29D presented below illustrates an exemplary user interface for calendar event creation.

 

3 apple pencil working with iOS Calendar App

 

In March of this year MacRumors noted in a report that "you might be able to tap into a Messages text field with the ‌Apple Pencil‌, hand write a message to someone, have it automatically converted to a more easily readable typewritten text, and then send it.

 

According to information obtained by MacRumors, the PencilKit feature appears to work with any text input field available in iOS, making it compatible with Messages, Notes, Reminders, Calendar, Mail, and more."

 

So, it would appear that Apple's iOS 14 will be supporting their 2015 patented technology allowing Apple Pencil to finally extend to applications beyond mere drawing and scribbling.

 

Patent claims are what changes in a "continuation patent" and with the change of the patent title, we know the patent focus has now shifted to Apple Pencil working with Apple's Calendar app. The 15 new Patent Claims are presented in full below. The first 13 claims focus on "The Method" followed by claim #14 focused on "An Electronic Device" and finally claim #15 focused on "A computer readable storage medium."

 

15 New Patent Claims

 

  1. A method, comprising: at an electronic device with a touch-sensitive display: displaying an electronic calendar on the touch-sensitive display, the displayed calendar including an area that corresponds to a first day; detecting a hand-drawn input on the touch-sensitive display, wherein the hand-drawn input extends over a vertical portion, less than all, of the first day in the displayed calendar; in response to detecting the hand-drawn input, displaying, over the vertical portion of the first day, one or more graphics that correspond to the hand-drawn input; while displaying, over the vertical portion of the first day, the one or more graphics that correspond to the hand-drawn input, detecting an input that corresponds to a request to create an event in the electronic calendar; and, in response to detecting the input that corresponds to a request to create an event in the electronic calendar, creating, in the first day in the electronic calendar, an event with a start time and an end time, wherein the start time and the end time of the event are in accordance with the vertical portion of the first day that the hand drawn input extends over.
  1. The method of claim 1, including: in response to detecting the hand-drawn input, determining whether the hand-drawn input includes hand-written characters; and, in accordance with a determination that the hand-drawn input includes hand-written characters, recognizing the hand-written characters in the hand-drawn input.
  1. The method of claim 2, including: after recognizing the hand-written characters, maintaining display of the graphics that correspond to the hand-drawn input.
  1. The method of claim 2, including: after recognizing the hand-written characters, replacing display of the one or more graphics that correspond to hand-written characters with the corresponding recognized characters.
  1. The method of claim 1, wherein the input that corresponds to the request to create the event in the electronic calendar includes ceasing to detect the hand-drawn input.
  1. The method of claim 1, wherein the input that corresponds to the request to create the event in the electronic calendar is detected on the one or more graphics that correspond to the hand-drawn input.
  1. The method of claim 1, including: in response to detecting the input that corresponds to the request to create the event in the electronic calendar: maintaining display, over the vertical portion of the first day, of the one or more graphics that correspond to the hand-drawn input.
  1. The method of claim 1, including: in response to detecting the input that corresponds to the request to create the event in the electronic calendar: maintaining display, over the vertical portion of the first day, of the one or more graphics that correspond to the hand-drawn input; and adding one or more graphics to indicate the start time and the end time of the event.
  1. The method of claim 1, including: in response to detecting the input that corresponds to the request to create the event in the electronic calendar: replacing display of the one or more graphics that correspond to the hand-drawn input with display of predetermined graphics for the event.
  1. The method of claim 1, including: detecting that a current time is the start time of the event or a predetermined time before the start time of the event; and, in response to detecting that the current time is the start time of the event or the predetermined time before the start time of the event, displaying an event reminder on the touch-sensitive display, wherein the displayed event reminder includes the one or more graphics that correspond to the hand-drawn input.
  1. The method of claim 1, including: sending the event to a second electronic device, remote from the electronic device with the touch-sensitive display, wherein a representation of the event is configured to be displayed on the second electronic device with the one or more graphics that correspond to the hand-drawn input.
  1. The method of claim 1, including: detecting an input that corresponds to a request to toggle between displaying the event using the one or more graphics that correspond to the hand-drawn input and displaying the event using replacement graphics for the hand-drawn input; and, in response to detecting the input, determining whether the graphic that corresponds to the hand-drawn input for the event is displayed or the replacement graphics for the hand-drawn input for the event are displayed; and, in response to determining that the one or more graphics that correspond to the hand-drawn input are displayed, ceasing to display the one or more graphics that correspond to the hand-drawn input and displaying the event using replacement graphics for the hand-drawn input for the event; and, in response to determining that the replacement graphics for the hand-drawn input are displayed, ceasing to display the replacement graphics for the hand-drawn input and displaying the event using the one or more graphics that correspond to the hand-drawn input.
  1. The method of claim 1, including: detecting an input that corresponds to a request to toggle between displaying a plurality of events using graphics that correspond to hand-drawn input for the plurality of events and displaying the plurality of events using replacement graphics for the hand-drawn input for the plurality of events; in response to detecting the input, determine whether the graphics that correspond to the hand-drawn input for the plurality of events are displayed or replacement graphics for the hand-drawn input for the plurality of events are displayed; and, in response to determining that the graphics that correspond to the hand-drawn input for the plurality of events are displayed, ceasing to display the graphics that correspond to the hand-drawn input for the plurality of events and displaying the plurality of events using replacement graphics for the hand-drawn input for the plurality of events; and, in response to determining that the replacement graphics for the hand-drawn input for the plurality of events are displayed, ceasing to display the replacement graphics for the hand-drawn input for the plurality of events and displaying the plurality of events using the graphics that correspond to the hand-drawn input for the plurality of events.
  1. An electronic device, comprising: a touch-sensitive display; one or more processors; memory; and one or more programs, wherein the one or more programs are stored in the memory and configured to be executed by the one or more processors, the one or more programs including instructions for: displaying an electronic calendar on the touch-sensitive display, the displayed calendar including an area that corresponds to a first day; detecting a hand-drawn input on the touch-sensitive display, wherein the hand-drawn input extends over a vertical portion, less than all, of the first day in the displayed calendar; in response to detecting the hand-drawn input, displaying, over the vertical portion of the first day, one or more graphics that correspond to the hand-drawn input; while displaying, over the vertical portion of the first day, the one or more graphics that correspond to the hand-drawn input, detecting an input that corresponds to a request to create an event in the electronic calendar; and, in response to detecting the input that corresponds to a request to create an event in the electronic calendar, creating, in the first day in the electronic calendar, an event with a start time and an end time, wherein the start time and the end time of the event are in accordance with the vertical portion of the first day that the hand drawn input extends over.
  1. A computer readable storage medium storing one or more programs, the one or more programs comprising instructions, which when executed by an electronic device with a touch-sensitive display, cause the device to: display an electronic calendar on the touch-sensitive display, the displayed calendar including an area that corresponds to a first day; detect a hand-drawn input on the touch-sensitive display, wherein the hand-drawn input extends over a vertical portion, less than all, of the first day in the displayed calendar; in response to detecting the hand-drawn input, display, over the vertical portion of the first day, one or more graphics that correspond to the hand-drawn input; while displaying, over the vertical portion of the first day, the one or more graphics that correspond to the hand-drawn input, detect an input that corresponds to a request to create an event in the electronic calendar; and, in response to detecting the input that corresponds to a request to create an event in the electronic calendar, create, in the first day in the electronic calendar, an event with a start time and an end time, wherein the start time and the end time of the event are in accordance with the vertical portion of the first day that the hand drawn input extends over.

 

Apple's continuation patent 20200293125 that was published today by the U.S. Patent Office was originally filed back in Q2 2020. The history dates back to 2015. Patently Apple covered Apple's original 2017 granted patent and it's 2019 granted patent update. Previous patent claims supported  apps and matching patent figures supporting Apple Pencil working with Notes and Mail apps. Today's continuation patent shifted the focus to Apple Pencil + Calendar. 

 

Considering that this is a continuation patent, the timing of such a product to market is unknown at this time. With that said, it would appear that this could be closer to market theoretically with iOS 14.

 

Whether Apple will actually pull the trigger to bring this new capability of using Apple Pencil with the iPhone 12 for use with Calendar, Mail and other apps is an open door. It'll be exciting to see if this is going to be introduced at their October event or remain a project for the future.  

 

1 Extra

 

At this year's WWDC-20 event, Apple discussed other advances coming to Apple Pencil this fall for iPad at least, like the "Scribble" feature that is presented in the video below, set to start when that topic was introduced.   

 

 

10.51XF - Continuation Patent Report Bar

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