Orange County – The USPTO has published a patent for Apple, Inc.’s innovative means for user control of Apple products, such as the iPad and iPhone. The new technology, which was assigned U.S. Patent No. 8,514,221, and is titled “Working with 3D objects,” allows users to control their devices by making movements with their hands in the three-dimensional planes above their Apple products.
With the newly patented innovation, Apple enthusiasts will be able to “extrude” 3D objects from 2D images on their Apple touch screens. Whereas users have long been able to manipulate their devices by “pinching” the screen with their fingers to zoom in or out, with the advent of this technology, they will be able to “lift” up off of the screen to “pull” images out into 3D shapes.
For instance, if a user views a two-dimensional triangular shape on their Apple device, by touching the object with their fingers and then “pulling” up from the screen surface, a pyramid shape can be created. Beyond this primary use of the technology to create a 3D experience, the patent makes mention of other potential uses, such as for allowing users to select and adjust textures, colors and surface settings by just hovering their fingers over the screen’s surface. The patent even describes a possible use of the 3D manipulation patent with the incorporation of 3D glasses, in a way that would dramatically alter the Apple product user experience.
Technology experts opine that this new technology marks Apple’s long-awaited admission into the playing field of inventors of motion controlled devices. Given that many competing manufacturers of similar 3D technology have struggled to fully implement it in a consumer-friendly way, they suggest that Apple may be the company to do so, considering its characteristic output of user friendly and simple, yet technologically advanced devices.