Let the Apple Car rumors roll on. If you’re always dropping your iPhone or iPad in your car, an Apple-made vehicle might be just for you (assuming you can afford it — and I doubt that I could). The tech giant has been granted a patent (number 11,006,257) for systems and methods for locating mobile devices within a vehicle.”
In the patent data, Apple notes that passengers in vehicles may carry mobile devices into the vehicles. Once inside, a passenger may place the mobile device at a location inside the vehicle cabin. Occasionally, the mobile device may move, fall onto the floor, or slide into a location on the vehicle that is difficult to see or access. As a result, mobile devices are often lost inside vehicles.
Apple says that current methods for locating a mobile device in a vehicle require some degree of manual intervention, “which can be tedious and cumbersome.” The company thinks it can do better. Hmmm. Wonder if Apple’s solution involves AirTag and Find My technologies?
Here’s the summary of the invention: “A method includes receiving, by sensors inside an enclosure of a vehicle, signals generated by signal generators in the enclosure of the vehicle. One of the sensors or signal generators may be part of a mobile device inside the enclosure. The method also includes determining a location and orientation of the mobile device from the signals.
“The method further includes determining, based on the location and orientation of the mobile device, an object in the enclosure that the mobile device is pointing to. The mobile device further includes transmitting a message to the mobile device in response to determining that the mobile device is pointing to the object, so as to cause the mobile device to display a user interface to allow the mobile device to control the object.”
Rumored manufacturing partners for helping Apple make an electric, likely self-driving car have included Hyundai, Nissan, and Volkswagen. However, don’t look for such a vehicle to arrive until at least 2025, if indeed it ever rolls out.