Apple has been granted a patent (number US 11875021 B2) for an “Underwater User Interface” for an iPhone because, well, who hasn’t wanted to use their smartphone underwater?
About the patent
The patent relates generally to computer user interfaces, and more specifically to techniques for accessing underwater user interfaces and for operating an electronic device while the electronic device is under water. In the patent Apple says that, as electronic devices are manufactured to be water resistant or water proof, some users are using their electronic devices while engaging in water based activities or other activities that cause their electronic devices to come in contact with water or other liquids.
Users will, in some circumstances, operate their electronic devices while the electronic devices are wet. However, Apple says that current methods for displaying user interfaces while an electronic device is under water are “outdated, time consuming, and inefficient.”
Apple’s patent involves techniques that provide “electronic devices with faster, more efficient methods for accessing underwater user interfaces and interfaces for interacting with an electronic device while the electronic device is under water.”
Summary of the patent
Here’s Apple’s abstract of the patent: “The present disclosure generally relates to underwater user interfaces. In some embodiments, a method includes at an electronic device with a display and one or more input devices, receiving a first request to display a user interface for accessing a first function of the electronic device. In response to receiving the first request, and in accordance with a determination that the electronic device is under water, the method includes displaying a first user interface for accessing the first function. In response to receiving the first request, and in accordance with a determination that the electronic device is not under water, the method also includes displaying a second user interface for accessing the first function.”