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Apple Researching Gloves for Use with Multi-Touch Devices

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Apr 12, 2001
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The U.S. Patent & Trademark Office today released a patent application from Apple describing research into gloves that allow the wearer to operate electronic devices. The patent application was filed on June 28th, 2007.




The invention, credited to Ashwin Sunder and Steven Hotelling at Apple, is a cold-weather glove
consisting of two layers: a thin inner shell and a heavier outer shell. While Apple clearly intends for the glove to be used in conjunction with Multi-Touch devices such as the iPhone and iPod touch, the patent is written to cover a much broader class of electronic devices.

Apple describes several methods by which the wearer could operate electronic devices while wearing the gloves. One method involves using electrically conductive materials for both the inner and outer shells to allow the signal from the wearer's finger to be transmitted to the input mechanism on the electronic device. Apple acknowledges, however, that the thickness of the outer glove may hinder the tactile response to the wearer. Additional methods include removable caps covering the fingertips, or an elastic ring in the outer shell that would remain nearly closed until pressure from the finger inside the glove forces the ring open and allows the finger to access the device's input mechanism.

While many of the inventions disclosed in Apple's patent applications have yet to appear in commercial products, this application at a minimum demonstrates Apple's awareness of the difficulty of using Multi-Touch devices in cold-weather environments and documents some of their efforts to address the issue. Apple is also certainly not the only vendor to attempt to develop Multi-Touch-compatible gloves, as several other companies, including Dots Gloves, The North Face, and Freehands, have introduced their own solutions.

Article Link: Apple Researching Gloves for Use with Multi-Touch Devices
 

NT1440

macrumors G5
May 18, 2008
12,494
15,773
But, but, what if you live in a hot climate? Or don't want to channel MJ?

Why would you be wearing gloves in a hot climate?


Anyway, im almost entirely certain Ive seen people with special gloves that allow them to use an ipod before....
 
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NT1440

macrumors G5
May 18, 2008
12,494
15,773
Im not really sure where the connection between this idea (thats been done already) and the nintendo glove is.....
 
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muskratboy

macrumors 6502
Jun 7, 2007
344
0
Golf gloves...

my golf gloves work fine on my iPhone. maybe because they are leather (on the fingers) and so work the same as skin?

and yes, you are already wearing your original hot-weather iPhone gloves. :rolleyes:
 
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NT1440

macrumors G5
May 18, 2008
12,494
15,773
my golf gloves work fine on my iPhone. maybe because they are leather (on the fingers) and so work the same as skin?

and yes, you are already wearing your original hot-weather iPhone gloves. :rolleyes:

Yup, leather, being skin, has about the same conductivity as our skin which is why it works.
 
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Auzburner

macrumors 65816
Apr 11, 2008
1,255
1
Syracuse, NY - USA
Living in Central New York I would love these. I have been aware other gloves with these abilities exist, but they are not attractive or not feel worth the money yet. I would hope Apple can produce a great glove providing warmth, functionality and a competitive price tag.
 
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fishmoose

macrumors 68000
Jul 1, 2008
1,738
150
Sweden
Oh boy do I need this right now!!

It's getting really cold in Sweden and my hands feels like ice after a couple of minutes with the iPhone right now!
 
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ChrisA

macrumors G4
Jan 5, 2006
11,730
499
Redondo Beach, California
For all those people who ask "What will we do with 16 CPU cores?" My answer is "Gid rid of silly things like multi-touch pads and gloves. The little web cam in the LCD monitor will just look at your hands. Then you can play "air touch pad".

And, yes, it will require a pile of CPU power to interpret "air touch pad". That why all current system use the pad because it is computationally simpler.
 
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Prof.

macrumors 601
Aug 17, 2007
4,949
815
Chicago
They already have those gloves. I saw one in a christmas catalog.

Little late there, Apple.:rolleyes:
 
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trule

macrumors 6502
Mar 16, 2007
310
0
sorry Apple, you wasted another 5000+ on a silly patent...

I'm sure that Apple is using these patents to stop innovation from competitors. They (Apple) have no intention of developing these crap ideas but it only costs them a few thousand to stop anyone else...just incase one of these patents turns out to be useful.

It is a valid approach to business, but if you want to predict what comes next I would suggest you will have more luck reading tea leaves :D
 
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