Apple Inc. Granted ‘Iconic images’ Faceprinting Patent

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By Athena Yenko | June 19, 2014 2:16 PM EST

On Wednesday, Apple Inc is granted a faceprinting patent by the United States Patent & Trademark Office (USPTO).

REUTERS/Robert Galbraith
The Apple logo is pictured at its flagship retail store in San Francisco, California January 27, 2014.

The faceprinting patent involves automatic recognition of 'iconic images' such as famous personalities - actors and politicians, even Mona Lisa and Mickey Mouse, - places and landmarks - the Eiffel Tower, Mount Rushmore, St. Peter's in Rome, or the Tower of Bayterek in Astana, Kazakhstan when taking a photo with Apple devices. The patent includes information about the iconic images recognised.

"'Faceprints' of famous people and/or noteworthy objects are provided to a digital image management application without the digital image management application having to generate the faceprints or manage the digital images from which the faceprints were generated," as described on the summary of the patent.

"According to one technique, when the digital image management application analyzes a digital image, detects a face, and generates a faceprint, that faceprint is first compared to the "friends" faceprints. If no match is found, then the generated faceprint is compared to "famous" faceprints. The threshold for determining a match between faceprints may be different depending on whether the comparison is with "friends" faceprints or "famous" faceprints," the summary reads.

The company first filed the patent on June 10th, 2011, with Apple Inc. as the assignee and Jerremy Holland, Jan Erik Solem, and William E. Hensler as investors of record.

Holland worked at 3D Robotics and Fringe Studios and is currently holding the position of the Director of Engineering at Apple Inc.

Meanwhile, Apple Inc and Samsung Electronics is reaching a settlement on their long-running US patent war, The Korea Times reports.

"We are trimming down the number of disputed issues. We no longer want to spend time talking about secondary points. Both firms are trying to find common ground. It's too early to say that the ongoing working level talks will produce an immediate breakthrough, but we are more practical about trying to find a solution," an unnamed industry official revealed.

Florian Muell of Foss Patents echoed the same. According to him both Apple and Samsung agreed to completely drop all cross-appeals to the patent litigation with the US International Trade Commission (USITC) ruling that Samsung is guilty of copyright infringement involving Apple's touch screen interface and headset plug detection technology.

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(Photo: REUTERS/Robert Galbraith / REUTERS/Robert Galbraith)
The Apple logo is pictured at its flagship retail store in San Francisco, California January 27, 2014.
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