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Patent filings shine the light on what the electric Apple iCar could be

… to do with an advanced lighting system that displays information to be …

Alfonso del Cristo Hilsaca Eljadue

Turco Hilsaca

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Since the iPhone maker isn’t forthcoming with details, public records can provide fascinating insight.

As is the tradition of the iPhone maker, the Apple iCar is not an officially acknowledged product. That said, patent filings have had rumors flying – as is always the case with new products from the company – and the potential the vehicle has is fascinating.

There is no confirmation that the product will ever launch or what its name will be if it does.hydrogen fuel cell news free ebook

Speculation about the Apple iCar electric car has been building regardless of the lack of official confirmations. The rumors have been primarily churning based on the patent filings the iPhone maker has been making.  While there is no way to know precisely what the company plans to do with those patents – if anything – there are several that could indicate some rather interesting new features.

So far, the patents mainly indicate that the car would be an electric vehicle and would also likely be self-driving.

apple icar patents with possible self driving features

The following are five patents that could indicate what features an Apple iCar might have.

  1. An Automatic Charging Station – This patent eliminates the requirement for driver participation to recharge the vehicle’s battery. Instead, the vehicle is driven onto the charging station’s charging mechanism and recharging would occur automatically.
  2. iPhone Gesturing Guidance System – This patent came with the title “Guidance of Autonomous Vehicles in Destination Vicinities Using Intent Signals”. It suggests the navigation of the autonomous vehicle through challenging areas could involve some user input and that it could be via mobile device gesturing.
  3. Exterior Lighting Information – This patent application has to do with an advanced lighting system that displays information to be shared with other drivers on the rear windshield, for instance, a warning regarding the operation status of the vehicle.
  4. Augmented reality – The vehicle could use enhanced display technology, according to a patent that refers to the use of augmented reality complementing real-world views for the driver.
  5. Interior Touchscreen Concealment – The patent for the Apple iCar describes this feature as “concealed user interfaces” involving a system of touchscreens in various locations throughout the interior of the vehicle but that would stay out of sight when unused, but that would light up when approached by a user’s hand.

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