Apple’s Newest Patents Tackle Security and Picture Quality


Apple‘s (NASDAQ:AAPL) patents seem to venture further and further into the realm of Hollywood spy movies with some of the company’s latest innovations. The tech giant seems to be exploring new technologies that would make your iPhone not only thinner and sleeker, but also more secure, using some pretty cool analytics and customizable options, according an AppleInsider report Tuesday.

The first of the two new innovations mentioned in a U.S. Patent and Trademark Office filing details a unique type of camera that utilizes two different sensors, one of which captures color data while the other would capture brightness data. By using two separate sensors to collect all of the needed data, the resulting iPhone could be substantially smaller and thinner than a similar camera using one dual-purpose sensor.

But the new sensors are purely for aesthetics, either. Apple believes that dividing the camera’s data collection between two different sensors will make manufacturing the camera less costly, and will also likely improve image quality as well, because it would reduce the camera’s signal-to-noise ratio and alleviate color reproduction issues that sometimes occur with the current optical filters.

A second patent application details an invention which would make iPhones more secure by enabling the device to automatically enable or disable certain security protocols depending on the device’s location. For instance, while in the user’s home, the phone may require a simple 4-digit passcode to gain 1access, whereas outside of that area it may prompt the user for fingerprint authentication, AppleInsider posits.

Users would also be able to hone the security of their phone down to individual apps and types of data. Banking and personal finances apps, for instance, could require additional authentication beyond those necessary to gain access to the phone; likewise, SMS data could be held to a different standard than e-mail data.

Apple also brainstormed different scenarios in which the device’s security program would be able to determine where it “should” be at a certain time by analyzing data from the user’s calendar or social media.

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