Apple has filed a patent application, detailing potential stylus solutions it’s looking into for touchscreen devices such as tablets and smartphones.
The Cupertino-based giant is working on at least two stylus prototypes, imaginatively dubbed the iPen. One is equipped with an optical sensor, such as a camera at the tip, for tracking the location and movement of the stylus on a touchscreen. The other uses a haptic actuator and a short-range wireless receiver to determine the iPen’s movement relative to the display.
The application reveals several block diagrams of the device illustrated in tandem with touchscreen gadgets that look similar to Apple’s range of iKits.
While we don’t foresee the iPhone shipping with an iPen anytime soon, an accessory to aid those that want to use a stylus does excite us.
We’re also curious to see whether Apple might be considering creating a rival to the so-called ‘phablet’ from Samsung, the Galaxy Note, which has been a runaway success with sales of over five million units.
Rumours have been long doing the rounds that a smaller iPad is in the works, which we think could be the perfect device for the iPen.
Still, most patents never see the light of day. So don’t hold your breath for an iPen release tomorrow. If, indeed, it ever makes it to market at all.