Apple patent (gaze detection 002)

Apple apparently is renewing efforts to add the ability for the iPhone to detect whether or not it has your rapt attention. It’s not enough that you’re holding the smartphone, the company now wants to be sure you are looking at the phone’s screen.

Originally seen as a way to save battery life, iPhone gaze detection may be Apple’s latest bid to keep up with rival Samsung.

Apple’s patent application, filed in 2013, adds to an earlier 2008 filing and describes ‘Electronic Devices with Gaze Detection Capabilities.’

The technology uses the iPhone’s front-facing camera along with the device’s accelerometer to detect when you look away from the screen or put the phone down. Glancing away would automatically pause any running videos while also dimming the screen…

An abstract of Apple’s patent published Thursday by the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office reads:

When the electronic device detects that the user’s gaze is no longer directed towards the device, the electronic device may enter one of the standy modes, dim the display screen that was being used for the video playback operation.

If desired, the electronic device may resume video playback operation when it detects that the user has redirected their gaze towards the electronic device (e.g., towards the video screen).

This most recent divisional filing by Apple concentrates on the technology required for implementing gaze tracking. This latest application could be an effort by Apple to show “prior art” exists should a patent dispute erupt between the iPhone maker and Samsung.

Apple patent (gaze detection 001)

The South Korean smartphone maker introduced the Smart Scroll feature as part of its recently unveiled Galaxy S4.

Here’s a video of Smart Pause on the S4 in action.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=knpMJUpbhCg

As a proof-of-concept demo, an app named LookAway Player has brought Smart Pause-like eye-tracking to the iPhone.

And here is a demo of Smart Scroll and Smart Pause at the Galaxy S4 unveiling.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Yaw6CSaPnfk&t=42m50s

Samsung received the trademark for Samsung Smart Scroll just days before the S4 was introduced.

While the conglomerate filed for the trademark just a day after Apple filed its divisional patent application in 2013, samsung did patent “Apparatus and method for detecting speaking person’s eyes and face” in 2000.

However, there may be functional differences between the two gazing technologies. While Apple’s version focuses mainly on dimming the screen and pausing playback, Samsung goes on to use your gaze to control scrolling of web pages and email messages.

  • At

    Dear apple,

    Please leave the gimmicks for Samsung.

    Thank you

    • Kurt

      If you don’t like it, then don’t use it. Having less features is not better. smh

      • Bunna Chea

        Totally agree with you Kurt. Some people just want to spend their hard earn money for the same technology rather than something new

      • Kurt

        There are so many great features out there just begging to be on our phones 😀

      • RarestName

        Added features slow down the operating system in some way.

      • But this is Apple we’re talking about. They tightly control hardware, software and services so chances are such so called “useless features” would not slow the device down. This particular feature has the potential to increase battery life which is always good!

      • Justin Thurmond

        this is a really vague idea and assumption

      • RarestName

        Have you tried installing Siri on an iPhone 3GS/4?

      • I have and on its own (with MobileSubstrate disabled), I barely notice any degrade in performance. Perhaps that’s cause I used the Rainstone port which is independent of mobile substrate….

      • Justin Thurmond

        i get your point in that scenario – but i also thought what siri is designed for (4s/5 etc) wouldnt really slow things down too much?

      • Cameron Chao

        you havent heard of the Samsung bloatware complaints?

      • Kurt

        No I haven’t (don’t believe there are with the galaxy and note line). But aren’t they mostly, if not all, turned off by default and with Android you have the ability (with ESFile for example) to uninstall all apps. Imagine having that ability with iOS. Having features, and if you don’t like them, dont use them or uninstall them. iPad could be more useful for me. At least there are awesome third party apps and a great screen.

      • Cameron Chao

        If you use logic, you can tell why Samsung needs a quad core processor and 2gb of ram with a 3500mAh or so battery just to run almost as smooth and lasts as long as (maybe more with Note) the iPhone 5. Of the 16gb of internal storage present in the GS4, 8gb is taken with useless bloatware feature, the worst is they dont work well, ive tried its eye movement and hand waving gestures, i was begging for it to work well to see some amazing technology, but i ended up looking like a fool shifting and waving at the phone for the wrong gestures.

      • Kurt

        Battery life and sipped is much faster on gs4. Why lie? Who are you trying to fool?

      • Cameron Chao

        this i cant understand, what is sipped, and battery life being faster means it runs out faster?

      • Cameron Chao

        You actually can uninstall all apps, its called restore or going into itunes, and turning the apps off. If you ever need to uninstall all apps on your phone itself you know its probably time to get a new phone.

      • Kurt

        Why do you keep reading my posts so wrong? I was talking about getting rid of carrier apps off android about apple I was talking about features that we should have and should be able to turn off or delete

      • Cameron Chao

        “But aren’t they mostly, if not all, turned off by default and with Android you have the ability (with ESFile for example) to uninstall all apps” Where did you mention Carrier?

      • Kurt

        bloatware is for carrier apps, and I’m not sure I ever heard it for manufactures tweaks/apps. I’m not an android guy, so I wouldn’t know well. Never owned an android device. But since iOS is so far behind, I’m eager to give it a shot. By the way, since you typically troll me….Siri stinks because she is so much slower than Google Now, and often, Siri hangs (she won’t connect, just freezes with the spinning icon), Siri’s voice stinks. Siri gets updated far less. So Google now can do many things Siri can’t, but still there are some imporant and gimmicky things Siri can do Google Now can’t, but we both know Google Now will be able to. And one last thing before I have you totally convinced, Google Nows voice sounds so much more natrual than robot Siri.

      • Cameron Chao

        Fair enough, i use both Siri and Google voice at the same time with Googiri and NowNow tweak. I have the best of both worlds. Android users cant use Siri at all. This is a Jailbreak Blog, why do you always choose to ignore that?
        Btw, Siri still has its benefits, certain requested information it returns is better than Google. I prefer Siri’s robot voice actually (not that it matters). Furthermore, i do prefer to use Chrome. Will i ever consider moving away from iOS, no. As long as Jailbreak is still around i dont think i will move to a laggy, less apps, ugly UI, cheap made phone, just for the benefit of it being open. I get whatever i want with JB and i still get to use Apples amazing ecosystem and lagfree UI.

      • At

        I would rather have 1-2 quality features than 10 crap gimmicks like this.

      • Kurt

        I’ll take the “gimmicks” that apple fanboys say are gimmicks as they are typically very useful. If I have the ability (and you do with Samsung) to easily turn a feature(oh sorry “gimmick”) off and then on when needed-I’ll take that instead of —> swipe to unlock. Swipe page full of static icons, start 3rd party app.

        I bet you think its a gimmick having an s-pen, popup video, split screen, etc. You are a great candidate to keep buying the iphone when it doesnt improve. At least get a real phone and stick with the iPad as I am.

    • Cameron Chao

      At, Apple will make it actually usable before releasing to the public. If they are unable to do so, they wont.

      • @dongiuj

        Like apple maps and siri when it was released? Good comment!

      • Cameron Chao

        Apple maps, Ok. Siri? what problem?

      • @dongiuj

        Neither performed that well when released to the public and you know they didn’t. Even now Siri has some problems with my contacts ( yes, English names ).
        No doubt, it’s a pretty cool thing at the moment but it still has its problems recongnizing and performing things and I’m sure people will be able to confirm that.

      • Cameron Chao

        Siri is a voice recognition technology, its always technically in ‘beta’ form. If you can point that Siri doesnt work that well then neither does Google voice. Recognizing what you say depends on how you speak as well. Apple Maps i can understand, they did release it with terrible bugs everywhere.

      • Kurt

        Never was voice recognition in this perpetual “beta” until Apple said Siri is in Beta. That’s the real reason you are saying it. Don’t be a parrot.

      • Cameron Chao

        How am i a parrot when you just said Apple never said Siri was in Beta. All i did point out is that voice technology is an always updating feature, unless someone puts in some serious AI into it.

      • Kurt

        I clearly said apple said Siri was in beta. You have a problem reading what people say.

      • Cameron Chao

        I have never seen Apple saying Siri was in beta, which was why i said “technically” in beta. And read my second line for the reason i said beta also. Im the only one who cant read? Or are you choosing to ignore my facts.

      • Kurt

        “…always updating feature” <—that doesn't define beta. I guess that was your "fact"

      • Cameron Chao

        using ‘Technically’ before something, was me trying to say, do not count this as a fact. I do not know where exactly Siri stands but if Apple said Beta, why would you say they are lying?

      • @dongiuj

        “I have never seen Apple saying Siri was in beta”
        Well in that case you need to research before commenting then.

      • Cameron Chao

        my god, theres no research in this, i might suck at English but you fail in your logic and reasoning, why do i need to research what Apple has said. I commented based on my opinion. Who’s making the dumb comment now.

      • @dongiuj

        Learn to read properly please before making dumb comments.

      • @dongiuj

        I didn’t say google voice was better or anything so don’t start trying to go down that road. Just pointing out how you think apple only release things that work when actual fact apple has released things that don’t work properly ( maps, antenna and Siri ). I think my iPhone and iPad are nice devices but you won’t catch me verbally protecting apple. So pull your tongue out of apple’s arse, will you!

      • Kurt

        He can’t read well. Multiple times today he has responded and said the opposite of what I said.

      • Cameron Chao

        He said this before i made those ‘mistakes’. Smart ass. Read our whole convo before you make this judgement.

      • @dongiuj

        I know. This person REALLY can’t read properly or english isn’t his/her first language.

      • Cameron Chao

        You know, when you decide to gang up with the guy scolding the person on his reading ability, it simply means you choose to just simply piss the person off instead of concentrating on the debate. You made 3 replies on how dumb am i and how i cant read. Really…

      • Kurt

        He’s a troll. Watch out, he may start replying to your comments from now on trying to start with you. He didnt it to me for weeks. If you see a message by me, you will many many times see a reply from him arguing with me.

  • Khan Rulzz

    By not not adding gimmick things like samsung done apple can move a forward !!!

    • Joseph

      Excuse me? You can move forward by not adding features and therefore… moving forward?

  • Apple, do whatever you want, just make it usable and test it for a while instead of pulling out “a lot of features” that most of the time doesn’t work, but you implemented them just to tell to everybody that you have “so many new features”… :cough: samsung :cough:

    • :cough: Apple maps and Siri :cough:

      • Yash Gorana

        siri is good
        maps is in it’s infancy.

        6 moths ago, maps was shit. now they are great.

  • Gorgonphone

    sounds glitchy and flaky… and um lame..

  • TesticularFortitude

    Garbage headline.

    Apple’s patent has zero to do with scrolling. It’s about dimming the display when you look away to preserve battery life. Also, this amends a current technology already available for iPhone – Which allows your iphone to dim when close to your face.

    The “gimmick” comments should be directed toward the lousy, click-bait thread title. Anything to incite people… I guess.