“Apple was awarded a patent this week for a concept that could allow users to crowd-source street-level, three-dimensional mapping data by simply taking pictures on their iPhones and sharing them with the world,” Neil Hughes reports for AppleInsider.

“The U.S. Patent and Trademark Office awarded U.S. Patent No. 8,624,974 B2, entitled ‘Generating a Three-Dimensional Model Using a Portable Electronic Device Recording,’ to Apple on Tuesday. AppleInsider first detailed the patent, when it was simply a proposed filing, in 2010,” Hughes reports. “The concept describes using a portable device, such as an iPhone, to record video or photos of an area. That collective information could then be used along with other crowd-sourced media to render an object or location in three dimensions.”

Hughes reports, “In this respect, Apple could essentially crowd-source the capturing of street-level images to end users, allowing for thorough and up-to-date information in its Maps application.”

More info, and Apple’s patent application illustrations, in the full article here.

[Thanks to MacDailyNews Reader "Lynn Weiler" for the heads up.]

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28 new Apple patent filings reveal 3D printer, 3D Maps, EarPod technologies and more – December 26, 2013