Apple patent May 18

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Concept image: Martin Hajek for Computer Bild
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Concept designers have been creating renderings of bezel-free iPhones – where the display extends all the way to the edges of the phone – for years now. One major barrier to realizing this vision has, of course, been the Home button with its embedded Touch ID sensor.

Third-party companies have already developed transparent fingerprint sensors capable of being embedded into a smartphone display, and an Apple patent filed in March of last year but only published yesterday describes the exact same approach …

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Apple patent February 4

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An intriguing Apple patent application published today describes how the Touch ID home button could gain additional functionality, allowing it to perform different actions in response to different fingerprints, as well as adding pressure sensors to provide it with 3D Touch type functionality.

The patent goes into a great deal of detail about the technology, with little information as to what it might be used for, but Apple does give a couple of clues. One use of different fingerprints described is to allow someone else to use your iPhone or iPad, but restrict their access to particular apps and for a limited time. The obvious application here would be allowing a child to use only specific apps and/or limit the time they are allowed to use a device …

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Apple patent January 14

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An Apple patent application published today reveals an idea for an interesting variation on the magnetically-closed Milanese Loop band that allows it to do much more than simply secure the Apple Watch on your wrist.

By using a careful arrangement of magnet orientations, the band can transform itself into a protective case when travelling, a stand on a bedside table or desk – or a Mac accessory …

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9to5toys 

Apple patent January 8

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We asked you yesterday to tell us how exciting you found the possibilities opened up by Apple’s patent for twin rear-facing cameras, and the results were very clear: 70.4% of you selected either ‘very exciting’ or ‘take my money.’

In addition to the possible applications I outlined in the piece, some of you had additional ideas that might be made possible by the dual-camera tech which has been rumored for the iPhone 7

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Apple patent December 19, 2013

We’re pretty selective in the Apple patent applications we cover here, simply because Apple patents all kinds of things for all kinds of reasons, and for every one of them that makes it into an Apple product, there are hundreds of others that never will. But this is one we think might.

The core concept is nothing new: layered maps. The existing Apple Maps app already allows us to choose between standard mapping, satellite view or both, and Google Maps on the web allows us to switch on or off layers like traffic, weather, public transit lines and so on. But what the Apple patent application describes would, if you’ll excuse the pun, take this idea to a whole new level …  expand full story

Apple patent October 21, 2013

Apple has published multiple patent applications for keyboard covers for its iPad that sort of resemble what Microsoft did in its keyboard cover for Surface. Until now, however, Apple has relied on third-party vendors like Logitech, Zagg (who has already announced a new iPad 5 keyboard case) and Belkin to provide these covers. Logitech and Zagg have had keyboard covers for the iPad since before both the patent application above and Microsoft’s Surface announcement.

But today, Jamie Ryan, who lists Apple Developer Relations as a recent job, says that Apple has been working on a prototype of such a device and could release it at tomorrow’s event. He thinks it could be Bluetooth 4.0 to save power and was ‘told other cover like accessories are also being looked at.’

The patent shown above also includes other innovations such as solar power, big media control buttonsmulti-touch, wireless charging and even a second displayexpand full story

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