Apple patent application details new CMYK technology that could revolutionize commercial graphics

Digital Cameras at B&H Photo“Ask any publishing or graphics professional the challenges they face trying to reproduce colors in print as they appear on a screen and you’ll see eyes roll,” Erik Sherman reports for BNET.

“It’s a difficult trick, and one that costs businesses in many industries more money and time for commercial printing, because inherent technical problems make it time-consuming to precisely match color on a monitor and on a page,” Sherman reports. “But a patent application filed last September suggests that Apple may have a new approach that would make the process more easier [sic] and more accurate, saving publishers, retailers, advertisers, and marketers of all stripes plenty of time, money, and aggravation.”

Sherman reports, “Apple’s patent application 20100090930 details a smart solution: a monitor that uses adjustable filters to literally display subtractive CMYK color instead of additive RGB. That would eliminate virtually all the conversion companies otherwise need to do… To do this, you’d need a computer and software that could work with such a display — which means more Mac sales for Apple as well. The concept could reestablish the company’s preeminent position in print production and, by extension, all other publishing and graphics work that uses print as a component.”

Read more in the full article here.


  1. I’ll try to overlook the fact that this guy used the phrase “more easier” and focus on the main subject which is really great news for anyone who designs their own promotional materials for print as I do.

    It’s kind of ironic that this news (if it’s true) comes at a time when folks are finally starting to get over the stereotype that Macs are only good for graphics.

  2. “more easier”
    That’s the most bestest use of the English language I’ve ever read. ” width=”19″ height=”19″ alt=”wink” style=”border:0;” />

  3. Found this post by a graphics professional:

    Apple is about to lose the Professionals
    04/19, 01:31am
    I too am watching CS5. Apple made a big splash with FCP to start with, but now it’s like they don’t care about the pro market. Sorry, but I’m a visual learner… every year I make a pilgrimage to NAB to see the latest developments and learn how to use them. Apple has chosen not to present there anymore and it is a shame. There is no one to talk with from there company. No first hand real person to ask questions of. No one to give answers to problems or tips on shortcuts. In the mean time Adobe and Avid have been there in force. With what I saw at the Adobe both and the instructions given it is very likely that I will make the switch. They were cordial and friendly at the booth and I could hardly move around it without some Adobe assistant offering me help or promotional material.

    In the mean time Apple is a NO-SHOW. For a company awash with revenue they have chosen to ignore the trade show circuit all together. I realize attending these shows can be expensive, but there are certain shows that should be considered crucial to their existence (i.e. NAB, MacWorld or NAMM). Apple is ignoring the “warm fuzzy” you get in this day and age from a real human body vs some automated drone. At the show I got instant answers to my questions from Adobe. Apple’s message, “Umm… Go search the web buddy. We don’t have time for you.”

    Apple is setting itself up for another “Lightroom” fiasco with FCP. It’s almost impossible to find an Aperture user in the real world due to the secrecy of Apple and the slow update schedule. Nobody knew if it was coming or if it even would. The majority made the switch to Lightroom and I don’t know any that are coming back. At the WPPI (Wedding Photographers) Lightroom was everywhere you turned. The only showing of Aperture was in the back of the Samy’s booth with nobody to demo it. The same thing will happen to FCP. If I… and others… make the change to CS5 Premier in the next few months I’m not coming back to FCP, when it catches up, to get what CS5 already has such as support for native mPeg 2 and AVCHD editing along with BluRay authoring, which Apple seems to refuse to support. Mr. Jobs latest comment was if you want to watch HD do it on YouTube. I don’t think my wedding clients want to log into YouTube to play their wedding video at the reception?

    I was excited for Apple’s success. It was obvious at NAB. Walking around the floor. It was almost impossible to find Windows boxes running displays. Just the opposite of what was going on at NAB 3 or 4 years ago. But with this success has come a COLD Apple. One that gives the impression that… “now I’m big I’ll serve you at my desire.” Steve Jobs came to Apple and led the way for the company to create some great hardware and software, but It was the legions of Apple faithfuls that stood by and become the evangelists for what he did. One would not have happened without the other. If Apple gives the impression that it doesn’t need its professional creative customers it won’t be long before we don’t need Apple either.

  4. Too little, too late? With the iPad set to revolutionize print out of existence…

    Then again, maybe this technology will help the Kindle match colors with its e-ink…

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