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iPhones may be one day be able to identify arriving vehicles

FIG. 4 shows a graphical user interface on the display of a mobile device depicting instructions to activate an augmented reality mode.

Apple has filed for a patent (number 20210374407) for an “augmented reality interface for facilitating identification of an arriving vehicle.” The goal is to allow you to use your iPhone to tell who is driving or riding in  a car.

About the patent filing

In the patent filing, Apple notes that mobile apps are helpful for requesting a car to provide transportation. But, high usage of such mobile apps can cause confusion in an urban environment where there are many cars and where other people may also be waiting on a car, adds the tech giant.

This means you may get in the wrong car. Oops. And similar problems can also occur with other modes of transportation. For example, it may be difficult for a person to identify the correct bus at a bus terminal, particularly in a foreign country that uses a different language. 

What’s more, the driver of a vehicle can have difficulty in identifying a potential passenger or a specific stopping point to pick up the passenger. A pin or dot identifying a GPS coordinate may not provide sufficient accuracy in a crowded environment. Apple wants to provide devices that can assist in identifying the correct vehicle that a passenger is waiting to enter. 

Summary of the patent filing

Here’s Apple’s abstract of the patent: “Various embodiments of the invention pertain to an augmented reality interface for facilitating identification of an arriving vehicle and/or a passenger that improve upon some or all of the above-described deficiencies. According to some embodiments of the invention, a mobile device may be used by a passenger to scan scenery. 

“The mobile device may determine whether and where a requested vehicle is located and display an indicator of the requested vehicle on the mobile device. Similarly, a mobile device may be used by a driver to scan scenery. The mobile device may determine whether and where a passenger is located and display an indicator of the requesting passenger on the mobile device.”

the authorDennis Sellers
Dennis Sellers is the editor/publisher of Apple World Today. He’s been an “Apple journalist” since 1995 (starting with the first big Apple news site, MacCentral). He loves to read, run, play sports, and watch movies.
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