iPhone privacy screens coming? Check out Apple's fascinating new patent | Tech News

iPhone privacy screens coming? Check out Apple's fascinating new patent

Apple has filed a patent for privacy screens on iPhones, along with displays with adjustable viewing angles on the Mac. Know all about the iPhone privacy screens.

By: SHAURYA TOMER
| Updated on: Nov 23 2023, 12:45 IST
iPhone 15 Plus in Photos: Gets the Dynamic Island makeover
Apple iPhone
1/5 The iPhone 15 Plus gets the same 6.7-inch Super Retina XDR display as its predecessor, although the peak brightness has now been bumped up to a staggering 2000 nits, which is super useful especially outdoors. However, it still sticks with the 60Hz refresh rate. Therefore, the lack of ProMotion is a bummer. (Shaurya Tomer/HT Tech)
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2/5 Finally! Apple has got rid of the notch and brought the Dynamic Island, which debuted with the iPhone 14 Pro models, to the iPhone 15 Plus. It is a nifty little feature that is useful when you’re streaming music, navigating routes, ordering food, or doing all of those things simultaneously. (Shaurya Tomer/HT Tech)
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3/5 The shiny glass at the back is no more, and the iPhone 15 Plus now gets a new soft, matte finish which is less of a fingerprint magnet. While the smartphone’s design is almost identical to its predecessor, it now gets slightly rounded edges which makes it far more comfortable to hold for longer periods. And yes, the iconic mute switch is still here on the iPhone 15 Plus. (Shaurya Tomer/HT Tech)
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4/5 Lightning is officially dead! After years of resisting peer pressure, Apple has finally adopted USB Type-C, complying with the EU’s new regulations. But we’re not complaining. Apple has provided a nice, braided cable with the iPhone 15 Plus, although the charging speed is still limited to 20W. (Shaurya Tomer/HT Tech)
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5/5 One of the main changes this year is the camera system. After a couple of generations featuring the same 12MP camera, Apple has finally brought the 48MP camera to the iPhone 15 Plus, and the difference is instantly noticeable, with well-detailed images. With the new Smart HDR 5, photos are now well-balanced with good exposure. Stay tuned for some amazing snapshots in our full review which comes out soon! (Shaurya Tomer/HT Tech)
Apple iPhone
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Check out Apple’s latest patent which includes iPhone privacy screens. (Representative Image) (Unsplash)

Over the years, Apple has filed some very weird patents. From a MacBook-integrated iPhone, a windowless car, and vibrating VR socks to a MacBook with a DJ turntable, most of these products are very nonsynonymous with Apple. However, this does not mean that these products will make it to the production stage. In fact, many patented products do not even get prototypes. Having said that, it is still interesting to see the engineering prowess at Apple. Now in the latest patent, Apple engineers have reportedly made efforts to enhance the privacy of the iPhone by introducing privacy screens. Know all about this latest Apple iPhone privacy screens patent.

iPhones with privacy screens

The patent dated November 21, 2023, was filed by Apple at the US Patent & Trademark Office. Titled ‘Privacy films for curved displays', it theorizes the presence of a privacy film on the device with a light-blocking layer that is present between the first and second transparent substrates. But how would it work?

The patent states, “The light-blocking layer may have a plurality of opaque portions and a plurality of transparent portions. The opaque portions may be shaped to ensure light from the display is directed only to the primary viewer of the display. Each opaque portion of the light-blocking layer may extend along a respective longitudinal axis between the first and second transparent substrates.”

The iPhone privacy screen technology works like the third-party privacy screen protectors that are available in the market. The primary viewer gets a full view of the display with ample brightness. However, onlookers who snoop on your phone from different angles are likely to get an obscure view of your iPhone's screen.

Adjustable viewing angles on Mac

Meanwhile, the Cupertino-based tech giant has filed another patent titled ‘Displays with Adjustable Angles of View'. This patent, filed for the Mac, theorizes that a user could potentially adjust the viewing angles on the Mac which could act as a filter to counter those snooping on your screen. The user could control the polarization of the screen via an “angle of view adjustment layer”. Made from electrochemical material, this layer would include an array of light-blocking elements.

How would it work?

As per the patent, “When it is desired to operate the display in a private viewing mode, control circuitry may apply a current to the first and second electrodes that causes the electrochromic material to become more opaque, thereby restricting the angle of view of the display. When it is desired to operate the display in a public viewing mode, control circuitry may apply a current to the first and second electrodes that causes the electrochromic material to become more transparent, thereby opening up the angle of view of the display.”

Will iPhone privacy screens or other ideas come to life? This we do not know. However, these filings reveal the creative side of a company that was once called “boring” by former employee Bob Burrough.

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First Published Date: 23 Nov, 12:36 IST
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