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Google Patents Motorized Laptop Hinge and Other Patent News

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Companies like Google, Amazon, and Apple are constantly coming up with new ideas that help make everyday life easier. While patents are granted for many of these ideas, not all of them end up coming to fruition. Today’s patent news, however, hints at some very useful designs coming down the pipeline.

Google Patents Motorized Laptop Hinge That Aligns With User’s Face

Opening a laptop might not be the hardest or most time-consuming thing you do all day, but for users with mobility issues, a motorized laptop hinge could make life just a little bit easier. Google has been granted a patent for a hinge that will allow a laptop to open by itself by either sensing touch or proximity. What promises to be even more useful is a feature that allows the screen to adjust its position automatically based on align with the user’s face.

According to Google’s patent abstract, the computer would have image sensors that would detect the user’s face level and adjust accordingly. This would be useful, for example, when ambient light shifts during the day or whenever you adjust your sitting position, allowing you to keep your work flow going without having to stop and adjust your screen for optimum viewing.

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Apple Files Countersuit Against Qualcomm

Back in July, Qualcomm accused Apple of patent infringement concerned with extending cell phone battery life. At first, Apple denied the accusation, stating that Qualcomm’s battery life patents were invalid. Now, Apple has turned the tables on Qualcomm by asserting that it owns at least eight battery life patents that have been violated by Qualcomm.

Apple’s patents have to do with making sleep and wake functions work better by turning off parts of the phone’s processor when they aren’t needed. This in turn ensures that the processor uses only the minimum power needed. This is all part of an ongoing dispute over patents between the two companies. The legal war includes a suit in which Apple claimed that Qualcomm owed $1 billion in patent royalty rebates back in January.

Amazon Patents Self-Dismantling Delivery Drone

Once upon a time, Amazon was a place you visited to find that elusive book your local library or bookshop didn’t have in stock. Now it’s an online retail giant that offers almost any item you could desire, delivered right to your doorstep. Amazon even delivers wares within a few hours in some cities. Talk of drone delivery is nothing new when it comes to the e-tail giant, but their latest patent shows just how tech-forward the company can be.

With safety measures of big concern for drone delivery, Amazon has placed itself ahead of the game by patenting a self-dismantling drone. The patent describes a drone that would disperse its parts midair once it is recognizably malfunctioning. The drone would be equipped with a “fragmentation controller” that creates a customized process for dispersing parts, taking into consideration details such as the flight path, conditions, and terrain below.

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Walmart Files Patent For In-Home Retail Storefront

Speaking of retail, Amazon has definitely been a threat to superstore giant Walmart in recent years. With consumers demanding their goods sooner and at lower cost, Walmart to adjust their business plans and implementations. With the threat of Amazon’s instant delivery programs, Walmart has now filed a patent to get even closer to consumers…by putting the store right inside their homes. The patent describes an “unattended retail storefront” that residents would be able to access from inside the house. The unit would be loaded from outside by an unmanned vehicle of some sort.

Think of it almost as a giant hotel minibar for the home. This invention sounds pretty futuristic, and Walmart might not actually have plans to put it into action anytime soon, but it definitely shows forward thinking and innovation on the retail giant’s part.

Apple Looks to Strengthen Glass Used in iDevices

Most of us have known that cold fear that settles deep in the pit of your stomach in those few seconds between dropping your smart phone and picking it up to assess the damage. Apple, for its part, knows cracked and shattered screens are an ongoing problem with iPhones, and they’ve been working for years to innovate new ways to strengthen the glass in their phones. The company points out that while chemical strengthening works, there is a need for other methods of strengthening the thin glass required by iPhones.

Apple’s new patent contains designs for asymmetrically strengthened glass, including three stress patterns that cover the corners, straight edges, and center zone of iDevice cover glass. Methods mentioned include an increase in ion concentration on the front surface of the glass.

Why Follow Patent News?

Keeping up with happenings in the world of invention and innovation gives you a sort of map of the future of technology. If you know what’s been done and who’s already patented a product or idea, you won’t get too far into your innovation only to have to go back to square one. If you'd like to see how we can guide your innovation efforts, give us a call.

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Categories: Patent News