Face ID for Mac takes a step closer

By

Apple shows what a MacBook with Face ID would look like.
An Apple patent filing shows a MacBook with Face ID.
Photo: Apple/Cult of Mac

Evidence emerged today that Apple‘s facial-recognition system will be built into future Macs. Face ID is already a highlight of iPhone and iPad, and there’s solid proof the company is looking into adding it to MacBook and iMac as well.

U.S. International Trade Commission opens patent-infringement investigation into Apple, others

By

Apple-Store-logo
Apple is named in the investigation.
Photo: Laurenz Heymann/Unsplash

The U.S. International Trade Commission is opening up an investigation into companies, Apple included, that may have infringed on touchscreeen patents belonging to Irish company Neodron. The ITC also names Amazon in the investigation, in addition to a number of others.

Neodron has asked the ITC to issue cease-and-desist order. This would bar manufacturers allegedly infringing on the patent from selling relevant devices until the matter has been resolved.

Apple AR headset concept improves detection of movement and positioning

By

Taeyeon Kim
There’s little room on an AR headset for controls. Apple wants to make them virtual.
Photo: Taeyeon Kim

Interacting with an AR headset would be a breeze if it could project virtual controls into the real world. Apple developed a new method for using cameras to accurately track finger movements, enabling someone to toggle these augmented reality switches and buttons.

Apple spitballs iPhone with wraparound display

By

Every bit of this concept iPhone is covered in wraparound display.
Apple’s own designers dreamed up this iPhone with a completely wraparound display.
Photo: Apple

Apple designed an iPhone that’s all touchscreen. Front, back, top, bottom and sides — every bit of the exposed surface is a wraparound display.

And the description shows engineers put quite a bit of thought into the proposal.

Court denies Apple’s appeal in VirnetX patent-infringement case

By

Apple wants patent trolls to stop ‘gaming the system’
The lesser-spotted patent troll.
Photo: Andrew Becraft/Flickr CC

Cupertino’s seemingly neverending legal battle with patent troll VirnetX Holding Corp. took another turn this week when the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit denied Apple’s request to reconsider an original patent-infringement decision.

VirnetX and Apple have been fighting in courts for a decade over patents related to FaceTime and other secure communications. VirnetX, which doesn’t produce any products, previously won more than $503 million in damages, but courts subsequently threw out the award.

Here’s how Apple Car might eliminate blind spots

By

Here's how Apple Car might eliminate blind spots
Apple's got some fascinating ideas for Apple Car.
Photo: Aristomenis Tsirbas/Freelancer

Currently, drivers only have the rearview and side mirrors of a car to let them know what’s going on behind them. But a new Apple invention describes an upgrade — that may eliminate blind spots by projecting mirrored images of the surrounding environment onto the window or windshield.

This could give the driver more contextual information about their surroundings, depending on where they are.

Apple completely reimagines the iPhone case

By

Apple proposed swinging iPhone case
This is the simplest way of configuring Apple’s highly innovative iPhone case concept.
Photo: Apple/Cult of Mac

Apple engineers dreamed up an iPhone case that’s also a stand and a handle. And maybe a keyboard. It’s surprisingly simple, but also a dramatic departure from typical cases.

And it’s possible the designers see this as more than an add on. They seem to be proposing that handsets and tablets have this case built in.

Haptic feedback could make iPhone or iPad displays feel like rocks or fur

By

Haptic feedback could make iPhone displays feel like rocks or fur
Who needs boring old glass?
Photo: Ian Fuchs/Cult of Mac

Imagine being able to touch your iPad or iPhone screen and feeling like you’re touching metal, wood, or fur — despite the fact it’s just a flat glass display. Impossible, surely? Not if a new haptic feedback patent Apple has filed comes to pass.

This haptic feedback technology could complete the sensory AR experience Apple is aiming for. Slap on some AirPods and summon up some ARKit visuals, and you’d have truly immersive augmented reality.

Apple Pencil with a built-in screen is genius

By

Apple Pencil with touchscreen patent filing
Not resting on their laurels, engineers are looking for ways to improve Apple Pencil.
Photo: Apple/Cult of Mac

A next-generation Apple Pencil could have a built-in touchscreen. And it’s apparently an actual improvement, not just something bolted on to make it cost more. The display would let the user know what color they’re about to draw with.

Apple wants to put a computer on your finger

By

Apple smart ring patent
The Apple Ring, in two possible designs, might work closely with your iPhone or Mac.
Photo: Apple

Apple engineers put considerable thought into a “wearable electronic ring computing device” small enough to put on a finger.

The proposed smart ring would have a touchscreen and work closely with another computer, often acting as an input device for it.