Apple may turn to RFID tags for easy Wi-Fi setup

Posted:
in Future Apple Hardware edited January 2014
Apple Inc. may turn to RFID tags to simplify Wi-Fi networking of its next-generation Mac and consumer electronics devices, a recent patent filing has revealed.



The filing, titled simply "RFID network arrangement," describes a system in which a router -- such as an AirPort Extreme Base station -- would hold an RFID transceiver containing all of the network's configuration information, including authentication and encryption keys.



When an Wi-Fi-enabled electronics device containing a synchronized RFID tag -- essentially a small hardware patch -- comes within range of the router, the RFID transceiver would automatically transfer the necessary configuration info to the RFID tag without prompting the user to perform software setup.



As Apple notes in the filing, the wireless devices would not need to be turned in order for their RFID tags to communicate and synchronize with the RFID transceiver. Instead, authentication information could be exchanged through the use of passive RFID tags or help from a separate, smaller power supply. As soon as the devices turn on, they'd read the authentication info from the RFID tag an instantly connect to the network.



The filing, which was submitted to the United States Patent and Trademark on September 6th, 2005, and published for the first time on Thursday, adds that RFID network arrangements are particularly useful for devices that lack visual displays and input components, such as the Apple remote.



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Comments

  • Reply 1 of 54
    first post!



    but seriously, my first thought was for that AppleTV/gaming console controllers. Does the Apple remote really need to change from IR to wireless networking?
  • Reply 2 of 54
    jbh0001jbh0001 Posts: 80member
    This sounds like a bad idea to me because it opens security hole in which someone could create a malicious RFID tag, slap it under your desk, and re-rout your DNS through their own malicious proxies.



    That "configuration information" could be configuration for just about anything. It is bad, because it assumes trustworthy information from the RFID tag without any verification.



    Boy, the NSA could slip these RFID tags into just about any device that might get near a computer to perform its snooping--and it's all hidden and out of site from the user.



    Hello Big Brother!
  • Reply 3 of 54
    LOL, Buy a new Airport base station and start creating copies of peoples passports or changing them for good or evil.



    This maybe cheaper than making your own setup, LOL



    I wonder how long before it is used that way?
  • Reply 4 of 54
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by jbh0001 View Post


    This sounds like a bad idea to me because it opens security hole in which someone could create a malicious RFID tag, slap it under your desk, and re-rout your DNS through their own malicious proxies.



    That "configuration information" could be configuration for just about anything. It is bad, because it assumes trustworthy information from the RFID tag without any verification.



    Boy, the NSA could slip these RFID tags into just about any device that might get near a computer to perform its snooping--and it's all hidden and out of site from the user.



    Hello Big Brother!



    They maybe doing it already, did you check your belt and your shoes?
  • Reply 5 of 54
    louzerlouzer Posts: 1,054member
    So, these devices don't need to be turned on, because the RFIDs would communicate using a separate power supply. Which means what? That its always on. It just looks off.
  • Reply 6 of 54
    cubertcubert Posts: 728member
    Only Apple would try to make something so drop-dead simple that a grandmother could do it even easier to use!



    I guess they are shooting for the retarded grandmother crowd, too.



  • Reply 7 of 54
    solipsismsolipsism Posts: 25,726member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Louzer View Post


    So, these devices don't need to be turned on, because the RFIDs would communicate using a separate power supply. Which means what? That its always on. It just looks off.



    The minute power required could come from the wireless signal top the RFID.
  • Reply 8 of 54
    irelandireland Posts: 17,547member
    It could be for the real video WiFi enabled iPod, or the iPhone. Didn't Steve say the iPhone just does the right thing?
  • Reply 9 of 54
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Louzer View Post


    So, these devices don't need to be turned on, because the RFIDs would communicate using a separate power supply. Which means what? That its always on. It just looks off.



    I could be wrong, but my understanding is that at least in the case of some of the RFID chips, the radio signal provides the power necessary for the RFID chip to transmit its data or change its data upon request. In that case the device (router, laptop, Apple TV, etc) could be completly off and the RFID chip (only) would wakeup powered by the radio signal and do the recording needed.



    Then later when you turn on the device, it would read the info collected by the RFID and use it to set it self up.



    Depending on signal strength and Antena, the sender and the receiver could be at a bit of distance (say 30 feet). By defualt most readers read at just under a few inches.



    Thats what I heard, right or wrong.
  • Reply 10 of 54
    catman4d2catman4d2 Posts: 174member
    RFID is a government program they are designed to be non secure...



    they want them so very badly in humans, they want to make an RFID world where everything and everyone is tagged... and since theft is so easy with this things people being scanned and robbed from far away via a remote,we will beg them to put up the police state they already intend for us,the government can also evict somone from society with the press of a button if they dont find you appealing to their order, or if you speak out against them.......... this is no joke,that is the plan!,WE and APPLE should not support RFID in any way shape or form for that would be supporting the cause. and also supporting Nazi IBM.



    NO JOKE... this whole RFID thing has me concerned and i do have some Insider info,we should all be very concerned about what this means for humanity if we allow this.



    dont take my word for it... Visit www.wethepeoplewillnotbechipped.com



    for more info...



    and by the way some of the latest chips for humans do more than id...

    they have cerebral control capabilites...



    DOWN WITH RFID!!!
  • Reply 11 of 54
    jbh0001jbh0001 Posts: 80member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Louzer View Post


    So, these devices don't need to be turned on, because the RFIDs would communicate using a separate power supply. Which means what? That its always on. It just looks off.



    RFIDs don't need their own power supply. They are transponders which activate by the power of transient radio waves.



    It's kind of like the difference between a a television set and an oil painting: The television set provides its own light source. Getting data from an RFID tag is like shining a flashlight on an oil painting to see it. In this scenario, the computer's wi-fi components act as both flashlights and eyeballs. Transponders need no internal power source to transmit their data anymore than the pigments in an oil painting need their own internal light source to be seen.
  • Reply 12 of 54
    jbh0001jbh0001 Posts: 80member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by EagerDragon View Post


    They maybe doing it already, did you check your belt and your shoes?



    Hmmm. . . That might explain those suspicious looking MIB lurking around the other day when I bought that new belt, and those shoes. . . Hmmmm. . . .
  • Reply 13 of 54
    leonardleonard Posts: 528member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Louzer View Post


    So, these devices don't need to be turned on, because the RFIDs would communicate using a separate power supply. Which means what? That its always on. It just looks off.



    It's on standby. Actually there are quite a few things in your house now that have power to them, but really aren't on. A stereo with a clock, set-top TV boxes, computers, TVs. Alot of these are taking small amounts of power to keep clocks active, allow other activities, and to allow "instant power-on".



    Take that set-top box I mentioned, yes I can turn it on and off, but before I turn it on, it's really already on as it has a clock going and it has network activity (my cable company can send firmware updates), etc. I'm not really powering it on, I'm turning it on to be used.
  • Reply 14 of 54
    deapeajaydeapeajay Posts: 909member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Catman4d2 View Post


    RFID is a government program they are designed to be non secure...



    they want them so very badly in humans, they want to make an RFID world where everything and everyone is tagged... and since theft is so easy with this things people being scanned and robbed from far away via a remote,we will beg them to put up the police state they already intend for us,the government can also evict somone from society with the press of a button if they dont find you appealing to their order, or if you speak out against them.......... this is no joke,that is the plan!,WE and APPLE should not support RFID in any way shape or form for that would be supporting the cause. and also supporting Nazi IBM.



    NO JOKE... this whole RFID thing has me concerned and i do have some Insider info,we should all be very concerned about what this means for humanity if we allow this.



    dont take my word for it... Visit www.wethepeoplewillnotbechipped.com



    for more info...



    and by the way some of the latest chips for humans do more than id...

    they have cerebral control capabilites...



    DOWN WITH RFID!!!





    Give me a royal break. RFID technology is in the company badge that's hanging around my neck right now. There's a huge difference between using it in tech gadgets and implanting it in your wrist. There I would agree with you, I don't want to see the world get to the point where we're implanted with chips any more than you do. But the technology has valid uses.
  • Reply 15 of 54
    jeffdmjeffdm Posts: 12,946member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Catman4d2 View Post


    dont take my word for it... Visit www.wethepeoplewillnotbechipped.com



    Don't worry, I'm not going to take their word for it either.
  • Reply 16 of 54
    MacProMacPro Posts: 17,985member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by DeaPeaJay View Post


    Give me a royal break. RFID technology is in the company badge that's hanging around my neck right now. There's a huge difference between using it in tech gadgets and implanting it in your wrist. There I would agree with you, I don't want to see the world get to the point where we're implanted with chips any more than you do. But the technology has valid uses.



    Well said.



    Fear of the unknown is always there in the ignorant.
  • Reply 17 of 54
    vox barbaravox barbara Posts: 2,021member
    Maybe it is just me, but this kind of negative tone in these posts

    stunnes me a lot. I am not very tech savvy, if you know what i mean,

    but the idea to simplify network configuration steps is quite compelling.

    Apple go for your visions.



    my2cents
  • Reply 18 of 54
    jeffdmjeffdm Posts: 12,946member
    I really don't understand how this is set up, but the article doesn't even provide the patent number to investigate what it's really saying rather than relying on an abbreviated second hand interpretation. The biggest concern is the mismatch in range between WiFi and RFID.
  • Reply 19 of 54
    stompystompy Posts: 325member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by EagerDragon View Post


    They maybe doing it already, did you check your belt and your shoes?



    Ok, just finished checking my shoes, any tips on how to open up my belt without ruining it?
  • Reply 20 of 54
    splinemodelsplinemodel Posts: 7,311member
    I don't see the benefit of RFID here. It may as well just use the existing 2.4GHz radio, which becomes a firmware-only patch.
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