Apple patent application reveals smart stylus with texture sensing capabilities, 3D image generation, and more

“Apple has been working on advancing a future iPad with various forms of advanced haptics for some time now,” Jack Purcher reports for Patently Apple.

“Today the U.S. Patent & Trademark Office published one of Apple’s most advanced inventions for a future stylus that could sense textures and far beyond,” Purcher reports. “Apple’s invention… involves a stylus with texture capture, advanced haptic feedback and more importantly an inertial measurement unit. This type of technology is currently used in many navigation systems such as for aircraft, watercraft and other forms of transportation. The data collected from the IMU’s sensors allows a computer to track the position using a method known in the art as dead reckoning.”

Apple patent application illustration depicting a smart stylus with texture sensing capabilities, 3d image generation, and more
Apple patent application illustration depicting a smart stylus with texture sensing capabilities, 3d image generation, and more

 
“Apple’s invention generally relates to styli that may include additional components for sensing, recording and transmitting an image of the texture of a surface,” Purcher reports. “The stylus may include an image sensor contained within or attached to the stylus which senses the physical attributes of a surface over which the stylus is passed. The stylus may include a light transmissive tip through which the image sensor can detect the texture of the surface over which the stylus is passed. The sensor may be a camera which may be contained within the stylus or may otherwise be associated with the stylus. The image which is sensed through the light transmissive tip of the stylus may be stored or immediately utilized to produce an image which visually simulates the texture of the sensed surface or image.”

Read more in the full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: With years and years of work on smart styli, it certainly seems like Apple’s getting all of their ducks in order for the 12.9-inch “iPad Pro.”

SEE ALSO:
Apple patent app details smart, heated ‘iPen’ stylus for iPad and iPhone – July 7, 2011
Apple advances their future iPen with a continuous handwriting UI and processor system – July 9, 2015
Warning: Apple’s mythical iPad Pro may replace your enterprise PCs – May 14, 2015
Why Apple’s ‘iPad Pro’ will flop or something – May 11, 2015
Hands-on with alleged ‘iPad Pro’ case gives shows comparison to Apple’s iPad Air – May 1, 2015
Apple’s 12.9-inch ‘iPad Pro’ to feature oxide LCD display; mass production in Q315, sources say – March 5, 2015
Is a larger ‘iPad Pro’ an absurd idea? – January 22, 2015
Analyst: Apple likely to launch simple stylus with 12.9-inch iPad Pro; advanced 3D stylus due later – January 18, 2015
Apple granted another smart pen patent for capturing digital copies of notes and drawings – December 30, 2014
Apple files their 10th ‘Smart Pen’ patent of the year – December 6, 2014
iPen: Apple patent applications reveal advanced modular smart-pen – February 2, 2014
iPen? Apple secretly files three dynamic smart-pen patents in Europe – February 28, 2013
Apple patent application reveals advanced ‘active stylus’ for iOS devices – December 31, 2012
Apple patent application reveals more about their optical iPen and graphics program – May 24, 2012
Apple patent app details smart, heated ‘iPen’ stylus for iPad and iPhone – July 7, 2011
Apple patent application details new type of stylus for iPad – February 3, 2011

2 Comments

    1. Thank you! In simpler terms…it’s the technology that will allow writing with Apple’s stylus on an iPad screen to be as immediate as ink-on-paper. Even a few milliseconds of delay (which all consumer stylus devices have now) makes them unpleasant to use, and I think that’s one major reason they have never taken off beyond niche status.

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