Five years ago, tech giant Apple unveiled the original iPhone, which boasted of an advanced touch interface, and shocked the world, kicking off a mobile touch interface revolution in the IT industry. And, Apple could be setting a new benchmark again if 3D motion control comes to the next generation iPhone, dubbed iPhone 5.
Apple, known for pushing the boundaries, has filed a patent application titled Sensor Based Display Environment, which might launch the next great revolution in mobile user interfaces.
According to Apple Insider, the patent application revealed a detailed overview of a 3D display environment, basing on data from an onboard sensor, say, a gyroscope or compass.
The 3D interface would be presented with a special screen, which shows each eye a different image without glasses. Moreover, the future iPhone interface could be navigated by the users with one hand, by only changing the orientation of the device. In other words, the users even don't need to touch the screen to control their iPhone.
Due to the limited size of the typical display on a mobile device, a 3D GUI can be difficult to navigate using conventional means, such as a finger or stylus, the patent filing stated. For example, to view different perspectives of the 3D GUI, two hands are often needed: one hand to hold the mobile device and the other hand to manipulate the GUI into a new 3D perspective.
The patent also offers a feature named snap to, which could make navigation a quicker process. The feature could allow certain physical actions to take a user directly to a specific, pre-programmed location on the interface or access an app.
The U.S. Patent and Trademark Office released the patent application, which was first filed in July 2010, this week.
After the patent filing became public, the rumor about the next generation iPhone has started buzzing again on the Internet. Apple fans are curious whether iPhone 5 will use the new technology - 3D motion control.
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