Apple Patent Application Suggests Camera-Equipped iPod Nano With Situation-Aware Screen Savers

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Patently Apple reports on an interesting new patent application from Apple describing the use of environmental sensors to generate screen saver content for mobile devices such as the iPod nano. As an example, the device could sense such environmental characteristics as motion, sound, temperature, or even camera input, using that information to provide the users with screen saver content relevant to the setting.

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As one example of the technology in practice, Apple describes a screen saver displaying raindrops falling down the screen. By employing the environmental sensing, the device could automatically determine which way is down regardless of the device's orientation, allowing the screen saver to always display the raindrops falling downward.

Apple's figures for the patent application show a device that appears nearly identical to the current iPod nano, a square device with a touch screen displaying up to four icons on a home screen. With the text and images included in the patent application also addressing the possibility of using images taken by an onboard camera to inform screen saver activity, it offers additional evidence that Apple is considering adding a camera to the diminutive iPod nano.

Interestingly, Apple's patent application was filed in November 2009, nearly a year before the sixth-generation iPod nano debuted with the form factor depicted in the drawings.

Tag: Patent
Related Forum: iPod touch and iPod

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Top Rated Comments

coder12 Avatar
170 months ago
So essentially this says that if it's raining outside... I can look at my iPod instead of out the window?? :D
Score: 5 Votes (Like | Disagree)
nicky89 Avatar
170 months ago
Seriously, who the hell needs a screensaver on an iPod?:confused:
Score: 4 Votes (Like | Disagree)
HiVolt Avatar
170 months ago
How utterly... useless...
Score: 2 Votes (Like | Disagree)
goobot Avatar
170 months ago
There is a mic too, so it was a video camera for all of you that care.
Score: 2 Votes (Like | Disagree)
vincenz Avatar
170 months ago
I'm surprised people still care about the nano so much.
Score: 2 Votes (Like | Disagree)
davie18 Avatar
170 months ago
I have the nano before the current gen with the camera, and I have never used it once in 1.5 years.

I really don't understand why it's there, I just don't see the point of it.

What I would like to see is making the nano bigger so you are able to watch videos on it again. I have used my nano on many occasions to watch films on - yea it isn't a massive screen but it's just about big enough to be able to still enjoy watching stuff on it. I was really disappointed when they made the screen smaller.
Score: 2 Votes (Like | Disagree)