Aside from protecting a company’s rights, patents are an effective way to predict what a company has in store for us in the future. This is exactly what we are trying to find out from Apple.
In 2006, a patent application described a device as a, “portable computing device capable of wireless communications.” At first we weren’t sure on what this all meant, but several months later, the iPhone was revealed.
In 2004 and 2005, patents filed described a device that could, “detect multiple touches or near touches that occur at the same time and at distinct locations.” Another was describes as a, “virtual input device placement on a touch screen user interface.” Another device could, “activate virtual keys of a touch screen virtual keyboard.” Not long, we soon saw the iPad in the market.
With this information, can we say that patents are accurate enough to predict what Apple has planned for the future? Well, not always. At times, they are ideas that never happen. Sometimes, they are used to confuse the competition. However, there are a few patents that caught our attention.
One of these exciting patents is the iPad Air. No, it doesn’t look like the current iPad or iPad 2. Instead of a glass touch screen, it will make use of a unique material that can actually form physical buttons and interface elements. It will also feature a stylus that will be ideal for imaging apps.
Another exciting patent is a patent for the iPhone Nano. The smartphone will be extremely different from the iPhone 4. Not only will the smartphone be extremely small; it will be opaque enough for you to see your fingers on the other side. This will allow you to better work your fingers like a cursor. Furthermore, the smartphone will have a universal SIM. This has implications of Apple’s plans of becoming a MVNO (Mobile Virtual Network Operator). This will allow Apple to act as a server, which will result in networks bidding for business. This means that you will have the best network services according to the area.
Among the patents, these two caught our attention. They have the ability to redefine we look at smartphone and tablet technology.