Imagine manipulating your mobile devices by simple gestures like taps and scratches. These new features are possibly part of the cool packages to come with the iPhone 6, iPhone 5S, iPad Mini 2 and iPad 5 release dates set later this year.
In a new Apple patent that gained approval this week, it was revealed that the tech giant plans to build "electronic devices housing as acoustic input device."
Essentially, these iOS-powered gadgets will process sound inputs, transmitted through the casing, and translate them into corresponding functions, Apple Insider said in a report.
"The interpretation maybe based on the type of input, nature of the input, the location of the contact on the housing, the amplitude of input, as well as other various other factors," the same report quoted the patent filing as saying.
"A scratch may be interpreted differently from a tap ... A tap on the housing near an output or input device may actuate the device whereas a tap on another surface of the housing may be interpreted as a keystroke," Apple further explained.
When deployed, for example in the iPhone 6, a user can turn up or turn down the volume rocker by merely sliding a finger at the back of the device. Note that in an earlier patent, Apple envisions the rumoured phablet in a wrap-around display make with invisible control keys situated at the front and back.
In the iPad Mini 2 and iPad 5 implements, the patent is seen to activate the tablets' camera and audio functions though simple taps on pre-defined locations of the devices' frame or screen.
As for the iPhone 5S, users would softly thump on the phone during an incoming call and the handset would take the call, reject it or mute the ringing - the device behaviour on a specific situation will depend wholly on its programmed reaction, the new patent showed.
The invention is intended for an across-the-board implementation, Apple said, meaning almost all the company's products, MacBooks and iPods including, will benefit from the cool and killer features.
However, like in other Apple patents, approved and pending, there is no assurance that the new features will be applied in upcoming iOS devices.