Apple patent filing involves ‘cross platform credential sharing’

This graphic illustrates an example credential arrangement for cross platform credential sharing.

Apple has filed for a patent (number US 20230095543 A1) for “cross platform credential sharing.” The goal seems to be to allow you to share credentials for entering a vehicle or a building with others, even if they’re aren’t using an Apple device.

About the patent filing

 In the patent filing Apple says that, with the development of wireless communication, secured entities (such as vehicles, buildings, rooms, electronic storage locations and/or other secure physical entities or secure computer entities) can provide access through wireless communication with a device. And you may wish to share such access.

As one example, a user may have a credential stored on their iPhone that allows the user to unlock a door of their house. For example, the user may unlock the door by moving their phone within a proximity of a lock on the door of the house or by interacting with their phone to indicate that the user wants to unlock the lock of the door. 

To provide security to the user in some instances, the credential for unlocking the door will be prevented from being directly copied from the phone. For example, the credential may need to be generated by a credential manager that provides the credential to the phone.

However, a user may want to allow another user to be able to unlock the door on their house. For example, the user may want to be able to allow a house guest with a (shock!) Android phone to unlock and lock the door on their house so the house guest can come and go as they please.

 To allow the house guest to unlock the door, the user may want to share the credential with the house guest that will allow the guest to unlock the door. Although, the phone may not be able to generate copies of the credential or providing the credential stored on their phone.

As another example, the user may request that the credential manager generate another copy of the credential for the house guest. The credential manager may generate another copy of the credential for use by the house guest. A phone of the house guest may retrieve the credential from the credential manager. 

The credential manager may authenticate the house guest to verify that the house guest is authorized to receive the credential before providing the credential to the phone of the house guest. Once the phone of the house guest receives the credential, the house guest may be able to unlock the door using their phone.

Summary of the patent filing

Here’s Apple’s abstract of then patent filing: “The present application relates to devices and components including apparatus, systems, and methods to share a credential for accessing a secured entity between an origination device and a recipient device. In some embodiments, the sharing may be cross platform where the recipient device executes a different platform than the origination device.”

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.