Apple acquires BellSouth patent regarding home device automation and smart interaction

“Today the US Patent & Trademark Office published a patent application from Apple titled ‘Learning Device Interaction Rules,'” Jack Purcher reports for Patently Apple.

“The invention was acquired,” Purcher reports. “The inventors of today’s Apple patent are the same as those listed on the 2006 granted patent with BellSouth IP being the assignee, not Apple.”

“The patent covers a smart home environment being controlled by a single handheld device that learns new functions over time to control various in-home devices from a TV to an oven, microwave and so forth,” Purcher reports. “It’s unknown if Apple acquired the patent for a particular technology to use with HomeKit or a future smart TV – or to simply stave off a potential patent infringement lawsuit.”

Read more in the full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: Sounds like a patent Apple might want to hold for future versions of their Home app (machine learning) for iPad, iPhone, Apple TV, and Apple Watch.

[Thanks to MacDailyNews Reader “Dan K.” for the heads up.]

8 Comments

  1. Protecting themselves from patent trolls.

    “a smart home environment being controlled by a single handheld device that learns new functions over time to control various in-home devices from a TV to an oven, microwave and so forth”

    I’m sure at some point someone will claim that their TV remote as prior art or something.

  2. “Device interaction” makes me nervous. If my smart bathroom scale were ever to tell my smart kitchen refrigerator to shut me out, things could get ugly.

Reader Feedback

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.