Future iOS devices could perform self-maintenance when not being used

In the future iPhones and iPads could perform system upgrades and other maintenance routines when you’re not using them. Apple has filed for a patent (number 2016004619) with the U.S. Patent & Trademark Office for “automated maintenance of an electronic device.” 

The invention involves a method and system for performing maintenance, repair and recalibration functions on a portable electronic device so as to be undetected by a user. The device senses you’re not nearby and “when the device is otherwise in an environment which will make the performance of the functions undetectable by a user.

We’re so dependent on our iOS devices that we have them with us at work, at home, when we exercise, and, well, pretty much everywhere. This means they’re often exposed to water, wind, dust and electromagnetic interference events that can hamper performance. This necessitates increased maintenance, recalibration and repair.

However, this increase in service requirements can be annoying to users as they can be time consuming to perform and result in unavailability of certain services when you need them. Apple is looking into incorporating sensors that can detect whether the device is in use or is in an environment where services may be performed without inconvenience to the user. 

If a maintenance situation is identified, the maintenance or other repair may be performed without interrupting your normal routine. That is, the maintenance services may be performed if the iPhone or iPad determines that it’s not being used such as when you’re sleeping.