By Christian Zibreg on Jan 12, 2017
A new patent application for “Wireless audio output devices,” published Thursday by the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO), describes exactly how Apple’s new W1 chip inside AirPods enables zero-configuration Bluetooth pairing. In a nutshell, the charging case that comes with AirPods doubles as a physical pairing interface.
Aside from a built-in battery, the case features its own microprocessor and communications stack, a motion-detecting lid for starting the seamless pairing process with an Apple device and a physical button for manual Bluetooth pairing with non-Apple hardware, like Android handsets. Read More
By Christian Zibreg on Jan 10, 2017
A new patent No. 9,543,364 for “Electronic devices having displays with openings” has been awarded to Apple this morning by the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO). First filed for in February 2015, this newly granted patent reveals more ways iPhone 8 will outclass Android rivals.
The invention would basically put some common components typically found on the front face of the phone behind the display assembly.
What components are we talking about?
Well, stuff like the earpiece, forward-facing cameras, Touch ID and various sensors. Integrating such parts behind the display assembly would help design a truly edge-to-edge device. Apple is thought to be working on such designs for its upcoming OLED-based iPhone 8 refresh. Read More
By Christian Zibreg on Dec 26, 2016
iOS-compatible smart bathroom scales, thermometers, fitness watches and other HomeKit-enabled smart accessories by French health tracking company Withings have been removed from both online and brick-and-mortar Apple Stores following the latest legal spat with Nokia.
Wait, what do Withings products have to do with the Nokia patent row, you ask. Well, Nokia bought Withings in April 2016 for a reported $192 million, integrating their products into its Digital Health unit led by former Withings CEO Cedric Hutchings. The removal was first reported by MacRumors. Read More
By Cody Lee on Dec 21, 2016
Nokia announced on Wednesday that it has filed a number of complaints against Apple in Germany and the United States, alleging that its products infringe on Nokia patents. The company says it reached the decision to take action after several years of trying to reach an agreement with Apple to cover the use of its intellectual property. Read More
By Christian Zibreg on Nov 8, 2016
We know from Tim Cook’s remarks that Apple dabbled in virtual reality systems before deciding that augmented reality is the way to go. As opposed to virtual reality which completely immersed you in computer-generated environments, augmented reality overlays computer imagery on live video feed of the real world, enhancing or augmenting the images of your real-life surroundings.
Apple’s latest patent award for augmented reality maps that surfaced today in the database of the United States Patent & Trademark Office underscores the company’s commitment to augmented reality technologies. Read More
By Christian Zibreg on Oct 13, 2016
Currently, you can protect your Apple Watch with a passcode or set it to automatically unlock itself whenever you unlock your iPhone. But if a newly published patent application from the Cupertino firm is anything to go by, the wearable device may soon be able to seamlessly identify the owner with its built-in heart rate sensor.
As published by the United States Patent & Trademark Office (USPTO), the invention titled “User identification system based on plethysmography” proposes using a pulse oximeter to intelligently identify biometric characteristics of a user’s vasculature. Read More
By Christian Zibreg on Oct 11, 2016
The United States Patent & Trademark Office (USPTO) today awarded Apple a patent describing a process for embedding light-sensing sensors into a mobile display. The invention, titled “Electronic devices with display-integrated light sensors,” potentially paves the way for next year’s iPhone.
Apple’s new patent specifically mentions the ambient light and proximity sensors, which are found on the front face of the device, as being integrated into the display assembly.
According to KGI Securities analyst Ming-Chi Kuo and pundits in the know, like Daring Fireball’s John Gruber, the iPhone 8—or whatever a 2017 iPhone (or Tenth Anniversary iPhone) ends up being called—should be a major design departure from prior models as it would supposedly get rid of the chin and forehead bezels by integrating Touch ID and the front-camera along with other sensors directly into the display.
By Christian Zibreg on Oct 7, 2016
A three-judge panel was actually wrong to toss out of the window the $119.6 million verdict in a longstanding lawsuit that involves Apple’s patented slide-to-unlock gesture that the iPhone maker had sued Samsung over a few years back.
As Bloomberg reports, the United States Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit has now ordered the trial judge to consider whether the judgment should be increased “based on any intentional infringement by Samsung.” Read More
By Christian Zibreg on Aug 25, 2016
An Apple patent application published Thursday by the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) describes methods of capturing and storing biometric information of thieves via the iPhone’s sensors, including fingerprints, photos, videos and a wealth of other forensic data.
Titled “Biometric capture for unauthorized user identification,” the proposed and somewhat controversial security system would leverage machine learning to proactively capture an unauthorized user’s fingerprint and a picture after unsuccessful Touch ID/passcode attempts or if user-defined criteria have been met. Read More
By Christian Zibreg on Aug 1, 2016
In February 2016, a federal jury ordered that Apple pay $625 million to VirnetX Holding Corp after being found guilty of willfully infringing on technologies found in VirnetX’s patents related to virtual private networking protocols. Friday, the judge voided that ruling after determining that the case should be revisited, CNBC reports. VirnetX alleges that its patented technology is used in FaceTime and iMessage on the iPhone, iPad and Mac. Read More
By Christian Zibreg on Jul 19, 2016
A new patent filing by Apple, which surfaced Tuesday in the United States Patent and Trademark Office’s (USPTO) database, provides yet another indication that Apple’s engineers continue work on perfecting haptic feedback in its products. According to the filing, the company has invented a multi-axis haptic feedback solution capable of producing vibrations in different directions, based on whether a user holds the device in portrait or landscape orientation. Read More
By Christian Zibreg on Jul 4, 2016
Last month, Bloomberg ran a high-profile story about Samsung’s alleged initiative, code-named Project Valley, that would bring a pair of fully bendable Galaxy phones to market in early-2017.
Subsequent supply chain reports have since backed the story partially as it became public knowledge that Samsung has allocated north of $7 billion into boosting production of flexible OLED panels.
As Patently Apple noted today, a new patent application sheds more light on the South Korean conglomerate’s interest in creating a technology that would allow a smartphone or tablet to fold in half when not in use. Read More
By Christian Zibreg on Jun 28, 2016
The Apple Watch is designed for both left and right-handed use via a switch that prompts it to optimize the watchOS user interface for left-handed users. A similar feature could be headed to future iPhones as the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) a few days ago awarded the firm a patent for “Electronic Devices with Hand Detection Circuitry” that might let a future iPhone detect how it’s being held and tweak the Home screen and other aspects of the iOS user interface for left-handed users. Read More
By Christian Zibreg on Jun 17, 2016
Apple just hit yet another roadblock in China with news that the Beijing Intellectual Property Office (BJIPO) has ordered the company to halt sales of the iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus on the grounds that the Apple handset copied the design of the 100C smartphone, which is being produced by Shenzhen Baili, one of China’s phone vendors.
Apple has confirmed that it will challenge the sales ban by appealing to the Beijing Higher People’s Court and the Supreme People’s Court. Read More
By Christian Zibreg on Jun 8, 2016
Augmented reality startup Magic Leap, which created the Leap Motion Controller for the Mac, has been awarded a design patent today by the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) for a virtual reality headset which looks like a Star Wars helmet or something straight out of the Robocop movies. According to Andy Fouché, Magic Leap’s Vice President of Public Relations, the patent does not represent the finished product. Read More
By Christian Zibreg on May 26, 2016
The United States Patents and Trademark Office (USPTO) today granted Apple a brand new patent which seems to address a longstanding complaint among MacBook owners: the machine’s lack of an embedded cellular connectivity.
Titled “Electronic device with dual clutch barrel cavity antennas” and originally filed for in the second quarter of 2015, the invention describes using additional wireless circuitry for cellular data via cavity antenna structures that are not present on current MacBooks. Read More
By Christian Zibreg on May 24, 2016
The United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) on Tuesday granted Apple a patent that could be a perfect fit for Project Titan, its not-so-secretive electric car project.
The proposed invention outlines an advanced vehicle access control system that would permit an iPhone to do things like open your car doors, start or shut off the engine for specific time frames and for specific duration of time, adjust and activate personalized car settings and more.
“The feature set described in this invention went far beyond anything that could have been conceived working with CarPlay,” explains Patently Apple, which first caught wind of the granted patent. Read More