iPhone 6 Release Update to Feature Automatic Location-Based Authentication, More About Internet of Things

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By Precious Silva | July 20, 2014 10:12 AM EST

Apple's iPhone 6 may bring more impressive functionalities as a new patent sighting suggest the tech giant's work on automated security. According to patent published under the US Trademark and Patent Office, Apple has found a way to tweak the user interface of a mobile device including security protocols and other settings depending on its location. The device can adjust its configurations given the user is at home or at work. As production for the iPhone 6 has only begun, there may be some time for Apple to integrate the feature in time for the release. 

REUTERS/Toru Hanai
A woman holds her new Apple iPhone 5S after buying it at an Apple Store at Tokyo's Ginza shopping district September 20, 2013.

According to the US Patent and Trademark Office, the filing is entitled "Location-sensitive security levels and setting profiles based on detected location." In the patent, Apple describes a technology wherein the software and hardware of a mobile unit changes automatically the behavior settings and UI of the device.

As explained by Apple Insider, the system provides a mechanism allowing the iPhone to change the levels of security including related configurations depending on the relative location of the user. For instance, the device will only resort to a four-digit code if the user is at home. However, when in public areas, the handset may require Touch ID authentication aside from the pass code. 

Apple describes a range of methods to check the location of the user. This process is referred to as "location aspect." These include a home WiFi network, cellular tower date including GPS information. The system requires at least two location aspects for the device to determine the accurate place/setting of the user. 

There is also a secondary data processing logic called "location context" module. This identifies the settings configurations depending on the relative confidence of the system in determining the exact location of the device. The device also uses a predefined scale to check against a range of confidence thresholds. For example, once the device is in a preset threshold or specific location, the system checks if it needs to modify or apple the current security settings. 

As mentioned, similar to other patents, this may or may not find its way to the iPhone 6. If it does, consumers can expect increased functionality and security from the flagship. 

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(Photo: REUTERS/Toru Hanai / )
A woman holds her new Apple iPhone 5S after buying it at an Apple Store at Tokyo's Ginza shopping district September 20, 2013.
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