Apple is granted a patent for an enhanced media headset

Apple has been granted a patent (number 9,215,304) by the U.S. Patent & Trademark Office for an enhanced headset (think earphones) for use with iOS and OS X devices.

What would make the headset unique is that it could store data (such as your preferred equalizer settings) from, say, your iPhone and automatically apply those settings to your iPad when connected. The “media headset” would include at least one audio speaker that provides an audio output, a data store that stores media device data, a communications interface for exchanging the media device data with the media device, and a connector for detachably connecting the communications interface to the media device.

Apple says that one problem with using existing media devices (such as iPhones, iPads, and Macs) is that a user, when using a particular device for the first time, must configure the media device to support his needs or preferences. For example, a user may prefer certain equalizer settings when listening to music. If the user uses multiple media devices, or decides to use a friend's media device, the user must configure the currently-used media device with their preferred equalizer settings. Apple says there’s a need to enable a media device “to be efficiently configured with a user's preferred media device settings.”

Another problem with existing media devices is that data transfer techniques from one media device to another media device can be inefficient or impractical. For example, due to their small form factor, certain types of media devices may not have the ability to support traditional personal computer (PC) connectors or interfaces such as a standard universal serial bus (USB) connector. 

Also, it can be inefficient for a user to transfer a song from a first media device to a second media device using an intermediary PC or remote server. Apple says there’s a need for enabling a media device user “to efficiently transfer data from one media device to another media device,” as well as “a need, in certain circumstances, to ensure that the data transfer adheres to certain digital rights rules or requirements.”