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Apple tech uses specific gestures to unlock apps, device functions

post #1 of 20
Thread Starter 
A future version of iOS may feature a unique security method that recognizes different gesture inputs to open specific sets of apps, allowing for greater control over user access.

Access Modes
Source: USPTO


The technology, detailed in a patent awarded to Apple on Tuesday by the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office, deals with so-called "access inputs" that determine what apps, device services and functions can be accessed by a user.

Apple's U.S. Patent No. 8,528,072 for a "Method, apparatus and system for access mode control of a device," describes a system that creates user access modes guarded by predetermined gesture inputs.

Currently, Apple's iOS offers passcode unlocking as a means of access control. Under this method, users must input a simple code or password to gain complete access to the device. Apple also provides a certain level of user configuration, allowing access to Siri, Passbook and Reply with Message even when a device is locked.

The newly patented method would enhance or replace the existing passcode protocol with a gesture-based means of toggling access modes from locked to a variety of unlocked states. For example, a first gesture may be used to access gaming functions, while keeping email and contacts information locked. A subsequent second gesture may then grant access to an email or contacts app without any further interaction from the user.

As noted in the document, any number of gestures can be applied to the system, including the drawing of shapes, letters and patterns. Some embodiments call for a user to draw a circle, then a letter, to open a specific app or access a certain function. For example, to open an email app, a user could draw a circle followed by the letter "A."

Gestures can be arranged by category, like "gaming apps" or "communications," allowing for a more flexible unlocking routine. This partial unlocking allows access only to those apps associated with an unlocked category.

Access Modes
Illustration of access module.


Along with the usual touchscreen inputs, keyboard, mouse or stylus events can also be used to trigger access modes. In one embodiment, a user's voice becomes the "gesture" which opens a particular app or set of apps.

In some cases, more than two levels or modes of access can be configured. A user may preview a list of SMS texts or emails, which requires a first level of access. To respond, a second gesture is needed to open the communications app. Finally, a third level of access can be reached when switching away to a different category of apps or functions.

The patent notes that this stepped process can be configured to grant total access at any one level, making the system more usable on a day-to-day basis.

Aside from the obvious security applications, iOS device owners may apply the tech to manage access when lending a handset to a friend or child. Such a method may, for example, be used to prohibit in-app purchases by allowing children to play a game with a first gesture, but requiring a second secret input for App Store access.

Apple's access mode patent was first filed for in 2010 and credits Jianxiong Jason Shi as its inventor.
post #2 of 20
Multi-touch patent. One-finger salute to Samsung.
Perfect.

Sent from my iPhone Simulator

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Sent from my iPhone Simulator

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post #3 of 20
This will solve what multiple user account's does on other platforms. Android for instance has multi-user profiles where you get a different profile. The classical desktop OS user account login mechanism.
This method blows all those old techniques out by a million miles 1smile.gif

Go Go Apple ! Keep coming out with more kick ass patents like these. Innovative move.

Now the Android clubs gonna be like, shit we don't have anything remotely as cool as this 1wink.gif
post #4 of 20
Not quite. While I can see providing access to a specified set off apps and eg email accounts, it does not take into account individual app states/data or acces to different music, and other account related data.
Having said that I like the idea and might provide a 85% solution today and with a designated API and apps supporting this it might even catch the remaining 15%. Very elegant.
Yeah, well, you know, that's just, like, my opinion, man.
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Yeah, well, you know, that's just, like, my opinion, man.
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post #5 of 20

True. It will be interesting to actually see how Apple implements this feature into iOS 7 :) looking forward to it.

It makes sense why they went for a flat lock screen in iOS 7 , that can accept virtually any kind of gesture to unlock the device. Why din't Android think of this now :) ?

post #6 of 20
Eventy they will claim they did. Or show some more Star Trek evidence regarding prior art 1wink.gif
Yeah, well, you know, that's just, like, my opinion, man.
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Yeah, well, you know, that's just, like, my opinion, man.
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post #7 of 20
Just wondering: this could even be a backup solution or just necessary if one user wants to change his own profile for the 5c as there the fingerprint sensor might take care of this.
Yeah, well, you know, that's just, like, my opinion, man.
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Yeah, well, you know, that's just, like, my opinion, man.
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post #8 of 20
Next, Apple patents "nose-picking" gestures.

Software patents are to tech what GMOs are to food.

The whole patent system is out of control.
Ask me about.... The 80's!
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Ask me about.... The 80's!
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post #9 of 20
Quote:
Originally Posted by WonkoTheSane View Post

Or show some more Star Trek evidence regarding prior art 1wink.gif

 

I always think of Apple as the UFP in Star Trek; with their ecosystem etc, Microsoft as the Klingons; once enemies but now friends of a sort, Google as the Romulans or Dominion; against the UFP etc, & Samsung as the Borg; trying to assimilate everything / everyone.

 

Hopefully this will be patent the to hit back hard.

 

Regarding TV programs used for prior art examples, it amazes me that mock-ups / fake props of things that do not actually exist yet, can be used to get real tech patents invalidated when the software or hardware product is actually able to be created. Of course that does not mean you can copy the prop design look too closely as to make it identical. 


Edited by TogetherWeStand - 9/3/13 at 6:21am
post #10 of 20
Quote:
Originally Posted by vaporland View Post

Next, Apple patents "nose-picking" gestures.

Software patents are to tech what GMOs are to food.

The whole patent system is out of control.

 

Patents & copyrights are there for reasons, otherwise what would be the point in creating anything & not having ownership of that creation? Everything would end-up being the same more or less with no difference.

 

The system may need to be sorted out & enforced properly though. As has been said many times before.

post #11 of 20
Quote:
Originally Posted by SockRolid View Post

Multi-touch patent. One-finger salute to Samsung.
Perfect.

"See her this weekend. You hit it off, come Turkey Day, maybe you can stuff her."
- Roger Sterling
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"See her this weekend. You hit it off, come Turkey Day, maybe you can stuff her."
- Roger Sterling
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post #12 of 20
Interesting. I can see a few uses for this already but I can also imagine Apple coming up with some innovative ways to implement it that we'd never consider.

In addition to this providing security for people lending their device to children, presumably it could be used in a similar way when parents buy phones for their kids? You could have one gesture to unlock it for the child, giving them access to most functionality but leaving out purchases/installing apps/security permissions etc., then another gesture to unlock full access for the parent.
post #13 of 20
Quote:
Originally Posted by nikilok View Post

This will solve what multiple user account's does on other platforms.

Nope. Because it isn't setting true profiles.

This is more the kids mode idea blogged about on other sites. With more detail even. You might even be able to set more than one.
post #14 of 20
Quote:
Originally Posted by vaporland View Post

Next, Apple patents "nose-picking" gestures.

Software patents are to tech what GMOs are to food.

The whole patent system is out of control.

Actually this is very within the original intent of the system. It is new, detailed etc. It's not just swipe to unlock which is a tad obvious (so much so that at least one country in the EU required Apple to be way more specific in their patent or give it up)
post #15 of 20
Originally Posted by vaporland View Post
The whole patent system is out of control.

 

Completely incorrect.

Originally Posted by asdasd

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Originally Posted by asdasd

This is Appleinsider. It's all there for you but we can't do it for you.
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post #16 of 20
Quote:
Originally Posted by nikilok View Post

This will solve what multiple user account's does on other platforms. Android for instance has multi-user profiles where you get a different profile. The classical desktop OS user account login mechanism.
This method blows all those old techniques out by a million miles 1smile.gif

Go Go Apple ! Keep coming out with more kick ass patents like these. Innovative move.

Now the Android clubs gonna be like, shit we don't have anything remotely as cool as this 1wink.gif

Android pattern lock patent granted last month. Not exactly the same patents but users of both platforms win.
http://www.slashgear.com/android-pattern-lock-patent-aims-for-quick-launch-of-frequently-used-apps-06292855/
post #17 of 20

And then ...

 

Stupid google patent this to unlock their dumbphones!

 

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/technology-22790221

 

On 2nd thought, I could easily count the number of dumbphone users in subways! 

....the lack of properly optimized apps is one of the reasons "why the experience on Android tablets is so crappy".

Tim Cook ~ The Wall Street Journal - February 7, 2014

Inside Google! 

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....the lack of properly optimized apps is one of the reasons "why the experience on Android tablets is so crappy".

Tim Cook ~ The Wall Street Journal - February 7, 2014

Inside Google! 

Reply
post #18 of 20
Quote:
Originally Posted by WonkoTheSane View Post

Eventy they will claim they did. Or show some more Star Trek evidence regarding prior art 1wink.gif

Naw...Google will turn to the Harry Potter movies where you just point an elongated stylus at the device while giving it a voice command, such as, Openus E-mailus!"
post #19 of 20
Sounds like Activator
post #20 of 20

Whilst I had a great deal of respect for what apple have done in terms of design, integration and being first to market with emerging ideas, I have lost most of that respect when it comes to their approach to patents - this latest one isn't invention, it is the integration of a series of existing software techniques in order to perform a function (on a mobile device) - or as it would be termed if this was a piece of hardware "just an arrangement of parts".

 

Capacitive multitouch sensor arrays are a genuine invention, using them to do stuff is not.

 

If this was about cars, and multitouch screens were wheels, apple would be patenting "a method of driving around a corner in a mobile machine"

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