Patent filed by Apple hints at next-gen iPod nano features

Patent filed by Apple hints at next-gen iPod nano features

Summary: AppleInsider's discovery of the 2009 patent application for the iPod nano reveals a camera, touchscreen, mic and even games.

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There is now further proof the photo of a green iPod nano with an embedded rear camera that surfaced earlier this week is not just some Photoshop joke. It could very well be the rumored new nano.

AppleInsider reports that the 2009 patent application filed by Apple, "describes adding new sensors to the iPod nano, including a camera, to add new functionality" but "makes no mention of the iPod nano model in its text." The diagrams published on AppleInsider's site show a square device with no buttons, with icon-like graphics on a single screen that will presumably display different information when pressed (like a touchscreen).

The document also suggests that games will be a part of this new design, as well as "a motion sensor, temperature gauge, and a microphone. Each of these sensors could be used to dynamically alter the way a screensaver would be played on an iPod nano," according to AppleInsider.

I wonder if the "motion sensor" will serve a health function (i.e. a pedometer or heart rate monitor) or be used for games (like the Wii-mote). After all, many users like to exercise with their nanos rather than risk dropping their iPhones at the gym. Playing games on such a tiny screen (if the form factor is similar to the current nano) would hurt my eyes but perhaps Apple has some other types of game-play in mind.

What would you like your new nano to do for you?

[Source & Image: AppleInsider; here is a link to the original US Patent Application 20110109538]

Topics: Mobility, Apple, Hardware, Legal

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  • Apple does it again

    The iPod nano just keeps getting better and better.
    iPad-awan
    • RE: Patent filed by Apple hints at next-gen iPod nano features

      @iPad-awan
      People own that junk?
      Droid101
      • Owned

        @Droid101 That's right! They do it just to annoy you! And you get sucked in every time one gets mentioned. Worry not, Zune will make a comeback one day I'm sure.
        seaniepie
  • RE: Patent filed by Apple hints at next-gen iPod nano features

    I own a 4th gen nano exclusively for running. It fits nicely in the special pocket of Nike pants, and the slightly curved buttons mean I can control the device without putting my hands down my pants. All that got lost when they put the silly touchscreen on it.

    I wonder who buys pure MP3 players for anything but to put in in pockets during working out in the year 2011. So who will be happy with a touchscreen... I'll get another 4th or 5th gen nano when mine breaks again.
    h-fate@...
    • RE: Patent filed by Apple hints at next-gen iPod nano features

      @h-fate@... You asked who buys pure MP3 players etc.<br><br>I bought a new Ford recently and it has an iPod dock cable in it. This allows fully integrated mp3 play control via the car radio with full info about the track shown on the car radio screen. It has full support for selection of playlists, albums, artists etc. So I bought an iPod Nano 16GB 6th gen and it works great and I dont need to carry a pile of CDs in the car anymore. Oh, and this iPod nano appears to have a motion sensor in it. If playing it (out of the car) the manual says you can shake it to induce random play.
      bd1235
  • RE: Patent filed by Apple hints at next-gen iPod nano features

    I sold my iPod a year ago and I do not own any iPhone/iPod derivatives or have any plans to. I personally can't believe that people are still buying apple products when there are much better alternatives. But, I guess there are some people that just have to have that logo on their stuff. Just like the people that just had to have a little pony on their shirts, or a crown on their watch.
    mgrubb@...
    • RE: Patent filed by Apple hints at next-gen iPod nano features

      @mgrubb@...
      I completely agree. All of Apple success comes from their logo. That's why when Steve Jobs came in and changed up their product line, it made no difference to the company at all since all people were ever after was the logo. Oh Wait....
      anono
      • RE: Patent filed by Apple hints at next-gen iPod nano features

        @anono
        You're right, it's not just the logo, it's also the alleged 'status' one gains by proudly displaying the logo to show off how much money you have.
        Doctor Demento
      • RE: Patent filed by Apple hints at next-gen iPod nano features

        Are you guys really that stupid that you believe the old talking point that it's about the logo or the status? I think 95% of the people that still believe and repeat that drivel are small minded haters that would never own an Apple product for whatever delusional reason and have no clue what they are talking about. Sure there are going to be that small percentage of people (no matter the market) that due to low self esteem need to buy based on what others think but that is by no means the a percentage worth even talking about. Repeating such drivel only goes to show your self and an idiot and a lemming for following the hater crowd.
        non-biased
  • RE: Patent filed by Apple hints at next-gen iPod nano features

    ANd WTF is new and novel to be patent here?!
    7mgte
    • Exactly

      @7mgte You took the words out of my mouth - Apple continues their delusion that anything (even a trivial POS like this) they dream up is a new invention and "magical" enough to rate a patent
      archangel9999
    • RE: Patent filed by Apple hints at next-gen iPod nano features

      @7mgte <br><br>I was wondering that. How can you patent a screen with a clock on it?
      intman
      • RE: Patent filed by Apple hints at next-gen iPod nano features

        @intman The patent is based upon the sensors in the face of the device. The device take pictures or sound bites and varies the colors and/or elements (tags) of the screen saver to the user's environment.

        I'm concerned about the implications of a camera that's under the control of the device and not the user.
        alli_o@...
  • Upgrade

    Would by one mainly to keep my music on as it would be small enough to where on my wrist for travel and workout but would need more ram then they give it. Come on quit with the ram upgrade every year and give the same across the board for all the units.
    GAstorino@...
  • RE: Patent filed by Apple hints at next-gen iPod nano features

    Note the filing date of the patent: November 10, 2009. This is already history!!
    These kind of utility or application-like patents are often filed to take the lead and keep the competition on a safe distance initially. Utility invention patents can be filed at the US patent office only.
    kfilius
  • Macs rule

    I wouldn't go so far as to say that everything Apple do is amazing, but as a Mac user for five years now, I've never had a virus, no malware or any of the annoying problems that often occur when using a PC.<br><br>We need innovative companies like Apple to push the boundaries of technology - as they have done since the early 80s. For me its not about status, it's about having a machine that works with you, not against you.
    cartoon_boy
    • RE: Patent filed by Apple hints at next-gen iPod nano features

      @cartoon_boy While I like Apple products and have had Macs in the past your bringing them into the discussion the way you did relegates you to fanboy status so nothing you said can be taken as valid.
      non-biased
  • RE: Patent filed by Apple hints at next-gen iPod nano features

    I think that besides the excercise crowd Apple may be working on a new feature phone design. They need to grab lower end markets and that may include a phone that doubles as a Nano or a watch. Voice activated (Dick Tracy) simple games that require one finger or a shake. I would even say bring back video at least to play You Tube or finish a TV show. This should come with a cool Apple style Bluetooth headset which they currently don't make.
    jeff.fostermedia@...
  • China boycott

    Apple designs cools stuff. I wish they'd import it from somewhere other than China. That way I--and others who don't buy Chinese goods--could have them.
    Mandolinface
    • RE: Patent filed by Apple hints at next-gen iPod nano features

      @baporopat@... I wish they were made here but in reality they would then cost too much for most of us to own. I like your enthusiasm to avoid anything built in China but you do realize that even if the final assembly is elsewhere that most of the components of whatever you buy probably come from China don't you?
      non-biased