The iPhone 6 probably isn’t going to come out for another 18 months or so, but seems how it’s so far away, now seems like a great time to fantasize about possible features Apple might throw into the device based on patent filings. It’s Friday. I’m tired. So screw it, let’s talk crazy.
Yesterday the US Patent and Trademark Office published a patent application from Apple that showed Apple is considering adding hidden audio sensors into the displays of the iPhone, iPad, Mac, and maybe even the iTV if they get around to it. What wasn’t detailed was how Apple plans to use those sensors, but one crazy idea is that Apple might use them to create sonar-maps kind of like in the movie The Dark Knight.
Remember how Batman took Lucius’ sonar concept and applied it to every cellphone in Gotham to create a huge sonar-based live map to find The Joker? Here’s a refresher if you don’t, but yeah, the Apple concept is kind of like that High Frequency Generator idea, only on a smaller scale.
What the patent indicates is that Apple wants to detect audio waves through a display assembly. The display assembly may include a screen and at least one electromagnetic energy emitter configured to direct energy at an inside surface of the screen.
The patent also states that at least one sensor could be configured to sense the emitted energy after it’s been reflected back. Altogether this new technology will allow Apple to make thinner iPhones with more advanced sensors.
A more practical feature Apple might use the tech for – other than Batman sonar – would be for purposes of proximity detection to turn off touchscreen features when your iPhone is near your face. But because Apple’s also patented a method of using sonar with the iPhone, it is possible that the technology could be used to detect large objects and build a 3D generated map to assist people in the dark.
The Batman sonar could be a huge aid to the blind by alerting them of upcoming objects in their path. Or it could just be used to fight crime. Either way is fine with us as long as Tim Cook isn’t sitting in an evil lair watching all of our dirty deeds spill out in beautiful high-resolution sonar.