The days of going to a concert only to be forced to watch half of it through a fellow audience member's phone screen may be over thanks to a new patent from Apple!
Apple has just won approval for a new patent which could make it impossible for concertgoers to record the gig on their iPhones. The new technology for your built-in camera would make it possible for your phone to detect infrared signals and interpret the data received. One signal could then be used to disable the ability to take both still photography and videos. Here's the excerpt from the patent:
For example, an infrared emitter can be located in areas where picture or video capture is prohibited, and the emitter can generate infrared signals with encoded data that includes commands to disable the recording functions of devices. An electronic device can then receive the infrared signals, decode the data and temporarily disable the device’s recording function based on the command.
Basically this means that Apple may have found a way to prevent people from recording musicians in concert, or films in the cinema, provided the stage or cinema also had a small sensor placed on or near it that could allow or restrict camera functions. It would also be a way to block photos being taken in high security or sensitive environments.
However, the technology wouldn't just be used to prevent iPhone users from recording, the signals received could also allow phones to instantly display more information about objects the owner is viewing. This would be particularly useful in places such as museums or art galleries. The patent reads:
An infrared emitter can be located near an object and generate infrared signals with encoded data that includes information about that object. An electronic device can then receive the infrared signals, decode the data and display the information about the object to the user.
Amazing, right?! Forget Google Glass, this is much more instant, and it means we don't have to buy yet another accessory!
At the moment it is still very much a patent more than a reality, and there's no guarantee this technology will actually make it into our phones (and certainly not the upcoming iPhone 7), but it's still an interesting idea that the science could be there to make this happen at some stage in the future.