Apple Tries To Patent The Ability To Keep iPhone From Taking Video And Pictures

A frequent reader pointed me to this post that details a very interesting patent. Apple has filed a patent for a technology that among other things, will keep you from taking pictures and videos. Here’s what Patently Apple had to say about this:

In some embodiments, a device could, based on received infrared data, disable a function of the device. For example, an infrared emitter could be located in areas where picture or video capture is prohibited, and the emitter could generate infrared signals with encoded data that includes commands to disable the recording functions of devices. An electronic device could then receive the infrared signals, decode the data and temporarily disable the device’s recording function based on the command.

Imagine how this could be used. Go to a concert and you lose the ability to film it. Or perhaps something more sinister. From the first article I linked to :

This is all in the name of piracy, and some point out that this could be used for the better to “enhance” one’s experience while recording, but the scary part is that these IR signals could easily be used to block photography or video recording anywhere— including rallies, protests and by the police.

I’ll flesh that out a bit more. Take the so called “Arab Spring” for example. It isn’t too much of a stretch to imagine a oppressive regime such as Syria using technology such of this to keep the outside world from knowing about the atrocities within that country. Much like other technologies, this is a double edged sword.

What do you think? Is this good or bad? Please comment below.

One Response to “Apple Tries To Patent The Ability To Keep iPhone From Taking Video And Pictures”

  1. You had to figure that was going to happen sooner than later. There’s also a code written into DVD’s now that stop you from watching downloaded video on a PS3. There will be a way around this though…just like everything else, somebody figures out a way to break it. If you can’t, just buy an Android instead.

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