Tuesday, February 27, 2024

Apple may be developing a special screen protector for iPhones, iPads

FIG. 1A shows a schematic view of an iPad with a screen protector with sensor signals.

Apple has filed for a patent for that sounds a lot like the Astropad RockPaperPencil. The patent is dubbed “Cover Layer Detection for Touch Input Devices.”

About the patent filing

The patent filing relates generally to apparatus, methods, and systems for controlling a touch input device. More particularly, it involves the detection of a cover layer or screen protector on a touch input device such as an iPad or iPhone and taking actions to compensate for the changes to the usage of the computing device.

In the patent filing, Apple notes that although touchscreens provide an engaging interface for users, the cover glass can be fragile and susceptible to cracking or scratching. Additionally, the manufacturer-provided surface finish of the cover glass can be different from a user’s preference, such as by being more or less glossy than what the user prefers. 

Some users also prefer different cover glass textures for using different types of tools on the display. Many users therefore apply a screen protector to the cover glass to improve the durability, appearance, and functional characteristics of the cover glass. 

However, Apple says that screen protectors generally are made to cause minimal distortion to the images shown by the underlying display screen, but they can alter the light of the display screen in minor but perceptible ways. The company says this shows there’s a need to display screens technology.

Summary of the patent filing

Here’s Apple’s abstract of the patent filing: “Computing devices and methods are used to detect and compensate for the presence of a cover layer on a touch input device. A computing device includes a processing device, a touch input device in electronic communication with the processing device, and a memory device in electronic communication with the processing device and having electronic instructions encoded thereon. 

“The electronic instructions, when executed by the processing device, cause the processor to receive a first signal obtained from the touch input device over a first duration of time, the first signal including a first signal pattern, receive a second signal obtained from the touch input device over a second duration of time separate from the first duration of time, the second signal including a second signal pattern, determine a difference between the first signal pattern and the second signal pattern, and adjust a touch input detection setting based on the difference.:

Dennis Sellers
the authorDennis Sellers
Dennis Sellers is the editor/publisher of Apple World Today. He’s been an “Apple journalist” since 1995 (starting with the first big Apple news site, MacCentral). He loves to read, run, play sports, and watch movies.