Apple Patents iPhone Car-Starting Technology

Our TVs, games consoles and sound systems can all be controlled by our phones, and now, with Apple’s new patent, our cars could be controlled by iPhones too.

Apple Bluetooth patent image

After an age of Bluetooth enabled phones being used to transfer music and pictures between each other was effectively ended by the iPhone, and the range of smartphones that came after it, it seemed unlikely that Bluetooth would ever be as useful as it once was. Now, with the resurgence of Bluetooth enabled pay methods and with more cars utilising the concept of wire-free iPhone-to-stereo music playing, it seems that Apple are keen to juice every ounce of potential out of the wireless stuff as they’re planning on using the tech to let us control our cars.

Apple are no stranger to big ideas and this latest one is to use the Bluetooth capability in our iPhones to both start and find our cars. Published on Thursday by the U.S. Trade and Patent Office, Apple have reportedly filed a patent for the originally titled “Method for locating a vehicle”. It presumably does what it says on the tin and will allow users to find their lost cars in a sea of other four wheeled autos, all with the help of the Bluetooth on their phone. The patent filing also says that the parking garage or lot that the car is parked in would utilise some sort of wireless system (it wasn’t clear from the patent if that meant ‘wifi’ or just plain ol’ Bluetooth). The wireless parking garage would then be able to pinpoint the exact location of the vehicle, communicating it back to the iPhone as a map for the users to follow.

The other patent filing from Apple, that was also published on Thursday, is called “Accessing a vehicle using portable devices”. According to the filing, not only would it allow the user to open their cars (handy if they’ve forgotten the keys) but it would also allow for personalisation of the vehicle – a quote from the patent is below.

In some embodiments, the vehicle-related operation can include a personalization operation, in which the vehicle automatically adjusts an environmental setting (e.g., seat position, mirror position, temperature controls, settings for an audio or audiovisual entertainment system) based on the received vehicle access credential and/or on the particular portable device from which the vehicle access credential is received.

While the projected features certainly sound useful, there’s room for some security concerns as with all of that wireless tech, there’s a question of whether or not the iPhones, and in turn the phones that they would be controlling, could be hacked.

These are all things that Apple will likely address when they officially confirm the technology’s development, we’ll update when we know more.

Source : AppleInsider

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