View Full Version : New Apple 'Camera' Patent Will Allow Remote Shutdown of Your Phone or its Features

10-09-2012, 02:51 PM

There is an incendiary topic starting to heat up the web right now. Apparently Apple filed a new patent that would ultimately allow them or another third party to remotely deactivate/activate your phone or even just specific features of the phone. The patent is disguised as a way to remotely deactivate your camera at concerts or other venues where someone could potentially record copyrighted material illegally.

However, the patent is much broader in scope and functionality than just that. Based upon the way it is worded, it would actually allow any third party, like a governmental agency or a corporation to remotely control your phone. In fact, specific wireless "zone hotspots" could be created in which your device automatically has certain functions shutdown when you enter that area. The implications of this patent and the potential misuse of it are staggering.

The video above goes into a bit better detail explaining it. Here is what the patent itself states,

Apparatus and methods for changing one or more functional or operational aspects of a wireless device, such as upon the occurrence of a certain event. In one embodiment, the event comprises detecting that the wireless device is within range of one or more other devices. In another variant, the event comprises the wireless device associating with a certain access point. In this manner, various aspects of device functionality may be enabled or restricted (device “policies”). This policy enforcement capability is useful for a variety of reasons, including for example to disable noise and/or light emanating from wireless devices (such as at a movie theater), for preventing wireless devices from communicating with other wireless devices (such as in academic settings), and for forcing certain electronic devices to enter “sleep mode” when entering a sensitive area.

As you can see, the patent tries to sound quite harmless, but it's not too much of a stretch to envision virtual blackout areas and a dystopian future. Of course, the intent may not be nefarious, but we thought the information was worth sharing with you so that we could hear your perspective.

Thanks to our tipster, G-Man!

10-09-2012, 03:36 PM
Sometimes, you just gotta HATE Apple...

10-09-2012, 03:50 PM
Sometimes they definitely make it hard not to...

Nemo aeternamn
10-09-2012, 04:28 PM
Haha... this is a ludicrous patent they can have...Haha... I can see this getting widely adopted with huge misuse and much uproar

Cellar Door

"Who are you people and where is my horse?"

10-09-2012, 06:55 PM
I hope they get this patent. That way it can't be sent over to any phone I will ever own.

Sent from my Galaxy Nexus using Tapatalk 2

10-12-2012, 06:17 PM
I agree Huber. This might be one patent that Apple might keep other devices from getting so hopefully the Droids won't have to worry about it

Sent from my DROIDX using Droid X Forums

10-12-2012, 06:29 PM
I can understand if they want to enforce the rules in a high school or junior high but other public places I think that's just wrong. But high schools and Jr high's have young students who might use their smartphones to cheat on tests or text in class when they're are supposed to be learning. But that could cause a conflict with disabled students who need their tablet or smartphone to help them do their schoolwork if they need that kind of accommodation to take notes or type a paper especially if they find touchscreen keyboards easier than a physical keyboard. So this type of technological advance needs to be assessed because the developers need to consider the ramifications that could ensue if disabled students cannot use their smartphones or tablets to assist them with their schoolwork or other reasons.

Sent from my DROIDX using Droid X Forums

10-17-2012, 06:48 AM
Am I the only one who doesn't think this is a big deal? I mean signal jammers have been around for years....

10-19-2012, 11:29 AM
I think they use them in the military

Sent from my DROIDX using Droid X Forums

10-19-2012, 12:53 PM
Signal jammers are one thing (they jam the signal on the frequency spectrum area once the signal has left the phone), but taking over and creating a geo fence to lock out the device on the device itself is a whole new level.

big brother has been a round for a while, and its only getting bigger and stronger.