Apple receives a patent for a mat that changes functions based on the orientation of a device

Apple receives a patent for a mat that changes functions based on the orientation of a device
The USPTO has announced that it has awarded a patent to Apple for "Device orientation based docking functions." This is patent number 8,645,604 and deals with a method that allows a mobile device like the Apple iPhone or Apple iPad to change its orientation on a mat or in relation to a host device, and have the functions of the mat or device change.

Using sensors, the dock would be able to determine the current orientation of a device, and when it is changed, would know its new orientation. The orientation data, taken by the dock from the device itself, would then offer certain functions to it depending on where the unit is in relation to the mat. The possible orientations include face-up, face-down, and whether the top of the device is facing north, south, east or west of a specific point on the mat.

One example showed that the device would be charged using inductive technology when placed face-down on the mat. A notification or icon can reveal to the user exactly which function is currently being performed to the unit. Another part of the patent revealed that the mat could actually be built on another device like a laptop computer. That would seem to work for smaller-sized products like the iPhone or the rumored iWatch. Apple is supposedly looking into inductive charging along with two other methods of refreshing the battery, for the rumored iWatch.

The patent, originally filed by Apple in 2011, reveals that multiple devices could use the mat at the same time. With its own processor, I/O ports and a power supply, the dock could also be used to help data flow from a mobile device to a larger desktop PC. There is no word from Apple as to when or if, this technology will become available to consumers.


source: USPTO via AppleInsider

FEATURED VIDEO

10 Comments

1. emadshiny

Posts: 1144; Member since: Dec 05, 2012

iMat?!

2. mr.techdude

Posts: 571; Member since: Nov 19, 2012

Wtf!!! Is happening in the tech world. They're starting to invade our privacy and buy stuff that's not useful, wtffffffffff

4. joaolx

Posts: 364; Member since: Aug 16, 2011

"They're starting to invade our privacy and buy stuff that's not useful" You buy what you want. And is this invading privacy? How?

5. mr.techdude

Posts: 571; Member since: Nov 19, 2012

I don't necessarily mean apple or this piece of patent is invading our privacy, I'm talking about tech in general how they've become secretly against us. Although you've made a good point +1 to you joaolx

9. Caralho

Posts: 119; Member since: Jun 18, 2012

Privacy? Are you kidding me??? No such thing has existed for at least a few years now...old news.

3. vincelongman

Posts: 5677; Member since: Feb 10, 2013

Interesting patent, because if I remember correctly inductive wireless charging doesn't work with metal phones. So either Apple has to switch some other material, or develop a better method of wireless charging to work with metal phones. I can't wait for more phones to get wireless charging, its so much more convenient.

6. Fallout09

Posts: 421; Member since: Oct 17, 2011

Hence the mat knowing when the device is face down..... IE... Charge through the glass front and not the metal back.

7. vincelongman

Posts: 5677; Member since: Feb 10, 2013

Oh I didn't realize that That's very smart :)

10. Caralho

Posts: 119; Member since: Jun 18, 2012

Maybe next they will think of becoming "revolutionary" and walk into the age of NFC...lol

8. EclipseGSX

Posts: 1773; Member since: Oct 18, 2011

Put the iDevices in a pentagram shape and you open a portal to hell! Or they just burst into flames :P

Latest Stories

This copy is for your personal, non-commercial use only. You can order presentation-ready copies for distribution to your colleagues, clients or customers at https://www.parsintl.com/phonearena or use the Reprints & Permissions tool that appears at the bottom of each web page. Visit https://www.parsintl.com/ for samples and additional information.