All items tagged with "patent"

The ‘iRing’ Tim Cook mocked could be made a reality at Microsoft

It wasn't good enough as a concept for Apple, but since when has that stopped Microsoft?

It wasn’t good enough as a concept for Apple, but since when has that stopped Microsoft?

Tim Cook may have laughed at Topeka Capital Markets analyst Brian White’s “iRing” prediction, but someone at Microsoft was clearly scratching their chin, intrigued at the idea.

That’s based on a recently published patent application from Microsoft showing how the company has investigated a finger ring as a possible future wearable device. Microsoft’s impressive-sounding wireless ring could be used as an input device either to control a cursor on a mobile device such as a tablet, smartphone, or even a head-up display like Google Glass.

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Apple wins LTE patent case against WiLan

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A U.S. judge has ruled in Apple’s favor in litigation filed against the company by Canadian patent licensing company WiLan, reports Reuters, after the judge issued a public statement on the case Wednesday afternoon.

Apple was being sued for supposedly violating two LTE patents held by WiLan, but a summary judgement from Judge Dana Sabraw ruled that the patents were invalid and note infringed.

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Beyond touchscreens: Apple eyes touch-sensitive holographic displays

Photo: Star Wars

Photo: Star Wars

Apple is investigating touch-sensitive holographic displays for future Macs and iOS devices, according to a new patent published today.

As described, the patent would emulate the current touch-based interface for iPhones and tablets, only using near-field proximity in place of physical touch.

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How your iPhone could alter notifications based on your location

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Future iOS devices could vary user alerts based on where you are at any given moment.

Call alerts are all well and good but — even on the Apple Watch, when they’re being delivered directly to your wrist — it’s likely that there will be situations when users won’t be aware of them, and could miss important calls or alerts as a result.

Apple’s trying to crack that problem with a new patent published Tuesday, describing a “Self adapting alert device” that would vary the volume or style of user notifications to your iPhone or Apple Watch depending on where you are at the time.

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Apple finds a way of making sapphire screens even tougher

Gene Munster says not to expect sapphire screens except on the 64GB iPhone 6.

Apple’s new patent application shows how Apple might further strengthen its sapphire crystal using an “ion implanting” method.

Whether or not the upcoming iPhone 6 will sport a sapphire crystal display or not is something we’ll have to wait to find out for sure, but the ultra-strong material used by many high end watch manufacturers is certainly something Apple has spent a lot of time investigating.

Some of those investigations have led to a new patent application published today, revealing how Apple plans a technique for strengthening glass by using an “ion implanting” method as opposed to the kind of chemical coatings used for, say, Corning’s Gorilla Glass.

According to the application, the reason for this is that the kind of traditional chemical strengthening techniques used on glass screens might not be effective when used on materials like sapphire.

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Apple patents Samsung’s Galaxy Note-style radial menus for iOS

(Picture:

Samsung’s Galaxy Note has used radial menus before. But don’t worry: Apple got there first. (Picture: TechnoBuffalo)

Apple has been awarded a new patent for adding moving radial menus to both Macs and iOS devices.

The use of radial menus would give Apple an alternative to the pull-down menus currently used in most applications — allowing context-specific menus and submenus to be created at optimal positions close to a user’s mouse cursor or, in the case of an iPhone or iPad, their finger.

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Picture this: Apple granted historic patent for original iPhone camera

iphone-steve-jobs

We’re all so used to using our iPhones as our primary cameras these days that it’s difficult to remember what it was like in the dark days before the device came along.

Today the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office published a new series of Apple-related patents, including an historic 2008 filing for an Apple camera. While the patent covers both a standalone camera (something Apple hasn’t done since the QuickTake camera launched in 1994) and a camera integrated into a PDA, it is likely that this is the patent which covers the original iPhone.

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Apple investigating FaceTime hardware for the enterprise market

facetimeiconmakesnosense

Could Apple be working on a higher-resolution version of FaceTime for use in enterprise?

A new patent published Tuesday suggests that it’s at least something the company is looking at, as it describes a multi-view video conferencing camera system that uses scalable video encoding. The patented device, which was first applied for back in June 2012, could compete with Microsoft’s 360 degrees Roundtable conferencing technology, as shown below.

Given Apple’s recent deal with IBM to make hardware and software for businesses, and its successful focus on enterprise under Tim Cook, this could certainly be a valuable area for Apple to explore — particularly since it could conceivably work with a range of Apple devices, including Macs, iPads and iPhones.

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Apple is no longer trying to ban Samsung phones from first patent trial

Samsung-vs-Apple

Apple filed a motion with the U.S. Court of Appeals yesterday, dropping its cross-appeal of Judge Lucy Koh’s verdict in its lawsuit against Samsung, and officially ending Apple’s pursuit of a product ban for the rival company.

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Microsoft hopes to finally topple Apple with trippy robot butterfly

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It’s easy to poke fun at Microsoft when it comes up with its own knockoff version of an Apple’s long-awaited iWatch, iPad, iPhone, iPod, or pretty much any other innovation in the company’s history. However, when it comes up with its own ideas, it kind of makes us think that “thinking different” isn’t really in Microsoft’s DNA at all.

According to a recently filed patent application, Redmond’s latest Apple slaying idea is for something Apple hasn’t expressed any apparent interest in: a mood changing/health device in the form of a robotic butterfly. Yes, really.

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