Apple's new patent prevents audience members from illegally recording a live show on stage

Apple's new patent prevents audience members from illegally recording a live show on stage
Anyone browsing through YouTube can find a number of bootleg videos showing live performances that were not legally allowed to be recorded. This includes many Broadway plays and musicals including the mega-hit Hamilton. Rock concerts are also a popular subject of bootleg videos. Outside of catching someone red handed in the act of recording a show, is there anyway to prevent these illegal videos from being made? Thanks to a patent awarded to Apple, cameras being used to record live performances can be disabled by using a remote infrared beam.

The patent is titled "Systems and methods for receiving infrared data with a camera designed to detect images based on visible light." A beam of infrared light sent into the audience could change the images captured on-screen by smartphone cameras, and prevent these cameras from recording video. In order for the infrared signal to block videos from being taken, the camera on the phone would have to be pointed in a certain direction. This would allow those at an event to take pictures of their friends sitting in the crowd. But once the camera was pointed at the stage, no photos or videos could be taken. 

Apple also sees the infrared signal as being able to provide additional information about certain subjects. For example, users could point their phone's camera at a particular piece of art and read additional details about it on the phone's screen. Speaking of more information, the patent is number 9,380,225. The inventors credited with the patent are  Victor M. Tiscareno; Kevin W. Jonhson; and Cindy H Lawrence. The patent was assigned to Apple and was filed on September 22, 2014.

source: USPTO via PatentlyApple



1. kiko007

Posts: 7493; Member since: Feb 17, 2016

Pirated apps/music/video/ etc. needs to stop. So while I think this method is somewhat crude, it's at least nice to see someone trying to protect content creators. Now if someone on Android's side (Google hopefully) can finally take a stance against it, that would be grand.

4. RebelwithoutaClue unregistered

I am curious if this technique is ever implemented, will or could it be misused by criminals too. To stop bystanders from filming. And while I encourage people to buy apps (which I do as well). I do download movies/tv shows. Still pay good money to see around 2 movies a month in the cinema and pay for Netflix. But not all shows are available to me. Also if they ever find a way to completely eradicate illegal app/music/video, prices would certainly go up, since they would have the monopoly on those. But in the end I am more in favor of this method than this yondr bag some artists want you to put the phone in and you can only get it out with the help of security

7. kiko007

Posts: 7493; Member since: Feb 17, 2016

That's good insight. I guess I'm a little biased as the son of a musician if I'm being honest. That's partly why I'm so against illegal content means. I don't necessarily think that this method will ever make it on an actual device, I'm just glad companies are looking for solutions. All of your concerns are extremely valid, especially regarding content coats and studios monopolizing what "art" is. Always nice to hear your thoughts :D.

44. RebelwithoutaClue unregistered

It's a shame that a lot of these 'artists' are the ones that make millions anyway. And they want more and more. Not to mention the greedy studios who want their big cut as well, going after downloaders with a vengeance. In the mean time normal musicians are struggling to keep their heads above water. And I know that while I pay for apps and movies as well as download some, I'm hardly an average consumer. I know many many people only use pirated stuff and that does affect the developers and artists.

65. Arch_Fiend

Posts: 3951; Member since: Oct 03, 2015

You're making me feel bad about all the movies and songs I have on my pc smh.

17. ibend

Posts: 6747; Member since: Sep 30, 2014

its fine as long as that bystanders use android :P

14. Dr.Phil

Posts: 2376; Member since: Feb 14, 2011

Some would argue that the rise of pirated media is a result of overcharging the consumer for what they feel is a just amount to pay for the product and for making a product that consumers cannot justify actually purchasing (nobody likes having buyers remorse). I know people who do pirate media and they even explain that if they feel the product is good enough or the amount spent is justified, then they have no problem buying said product. Take video games as an example. Years ago, consumers would pay $50 for a full finished product and then an extra $10-$20 for what was referred to as an expansion pack, which was really a whole new game in of itself. Nowadays, consumers are paying $60 for an unfinished product that has to be fully unlocked through DLC content that can cost $40+ over time and then the company may come out with new expansions that can cost another $30-$40. And years ago, consumers could preview games through demo disks but those don't exist anymore.

21. MartyK

Posts: 1043; Member since: Apr 11, 2012

Google shouldn't be in the police business. You will always have people doing things they shouldn't. Plus, the people who is at this event pay their money to get in the event. So there performer was pay.

40. Xelief

Posts: 62; Member since: Aug 17, 2015

I can't help but wonder if members of law enforcement would start using such infrared beams to stop bystanders from uploading all these pesky videos of police brutality. If not here, then perhaps in some s**ttier part of the world.

43. yoosufmuneer

Posts: 1518; Member since: Feb 14, 2015

So what about my country where a Windows 10 license is priced at $200. That is 1/5 of what middle class earns Most software is pirated because thats the situation. People can't afford stuff, So I think companies should price products according to the specific region.

49. avalon2105

Posts: 352; Member since: Jul 12, 2014

Thank you for making that point. It's ridiculous that I have to pay more for Steam games than buyers in the US when their average income is over 9 times higher than in my country. Currently I have over 80 games in my library but most of them I've played pirated first to make sure they are worth it.

62. PhoneFixer unregistered

These fkin craple patents going imbecily pathetic n naive.. Just 100% d-heads asoles

2. Fona13A unregistered

It's okay if Apple allows establishments to break into your phone and disable settings... Anyone else? Nah, they can go to hell.

3. kiko007

Posts: 7493; Member since: Feb 17, 2016

Is that sarcasm? I did say this was a "crude" method.

9. kiko007

Posts: 7493; Member since: Feb 17, 2016

My bad. I couldn't tell if you were replying to me or simply replying to the article. It's hard to see the thread between post #1 and #2 before more replies come in. My apologies :D.

23. deviceguy2016

Posts: 826; Member since: Jun 16, 2016

I agree!!

5. TechieXP1969

Posts: 14967; Member since: Sep 25, 2013

Many people who record these events dont use smartphone many times. There are plenty types of hidden cameras you can buy at spy store and even just on eBay. Plus you can simply buy an older phone that doesnt have this tech inside. I am against people stealing too, but the thing is; this isnt going to stop it for tech savvy people.

11. Doakie

Posts: 2478; Member since: May 06, 2009

Most Apple buyers I've met couldn't be classified as tech savvy. I'd call most of them Computer Illiterate. The most technological thing they've operated before was a calculator.

12. kiko007

Posts: 7493; Member since: Feb 17, 2016

Only idiots believe stupid s**t like you've just posted. The entirety of the IT department at my office uses iPhones because of their security compared to Android and app optimization. Take your nonsensical generalizations elsewhere if you want to look like you know something :D

19. maherk

Posts: 6879; Member since: Feb 10, 2012

Interesting, since out of all IT employees I know, only 1 uses an iPhone and it's simply because he is addicted to some kinda dear hunting game. The rest(about 7 of them), uses Nexus phones, strictly Nexus, no Samsung no HTC or whatever.

20. kiko007

Posts: 7493; Member since: Feb 17, 2016

I'm not suggesting all IT personnel have the same preferences, simply that what the dude above me said is wildly inaccurate and kind of derogatory.


Posts: 89; Member since: Nov 09, 2013

Htc and samsung were the first two companies to make nexus devices. Just saying.

46. RebelwithoutaClue unregistered

Most IT personnel within the entire EU department of my company use iPhones too, including me. Mostly because that's the phone the company wants you to use. And most IT personnel don't give a rats ass which phone they have to use. They see it for what it is, a phone you can call, text and email with. They don't tinker with their phones, nor do they custom rom it or whatever is supposed to be tech savy. They have enough tech to work with, since it's their job. And most Android users I know aren't tech savy at all either.

22. guests

Posts: 196; Member since: Jun 19, 2016

"uses iphone because of their security"? lmao, I'm sorry if your IT guy have been blinded by apple BS marketing terms like "the most secure moile OS in the world"....

38. Wiencon

Posts: 2278; Member since: Aug 06, 2014

You guys are cancer

42. Xelief

Posts: 62; Member since: Aug 17, 2015

The retarded bulls**t in the comment section of pretty much any phonearena article makes me wonder why I even scroll down this far.

29. Ezio2710

Posts: 548; Member since: Aug 22, 2015

If he is an IT guy, then he may know how to deal with security. It doesn't mean it is iphone or android

28. DnB925Art

Posts: 1168; Member since: May 23, 2013

I would agree. You see many GoPros at events, especially in big concerts and festivals. GoPros are quite popular since at big events, your phone has a hard time holding a data signal so your battery drains quickly. Since GoPros are not phones, they don't have a problem with battery drainage due to poor signal. Plus the video and audio recording quality tend to be better on them than a phone.

41. Xelief

Posts: 62; Member since: Aug 17, 2015

It's not like some s**tty recording from the audience beats a professional recording or, better yet, being there yourself. I don't think these s**tty bootleg cell phone videos are actually cutting into profit too much. Most are completely unwatchable.

10. SirStephenH

Posts: 4; Member since: Jan 24, 2015

I see this being used by the police first to block people from legally filming them. Thanks Apple.

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