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Apple Is Working On A Drone

Apple appears to be entering the airspace, with a patent application published overnight showing the company’s plans to launch a drone… someday.

The US Patent & Trademark Office published “Systems and Methods for using Unmanned Arial Systems in Cellular Networks”, a patent application filed by Apple in mid-August.

This follows a patent Apple filed in March related to “drones connected to cellular networks, [and] successful and reliable handover operations, by which a drone is transferred from a weaker cell to a stronger cell as it travels, leading to safe operation across large areas and enabling usages such as remote sensing and package delivery.”

This latest patent is very technical, to the point where you basically need to be an aerial engineer to understand it – it regards an unmanned aerial system (UAS) operation service that will use a 3GPP network, while also enabling communication and control with a 5G system.

In other words, it’s about a drone.

The above patent figure (via Patently Apple) explains how the drone would be controlled.

“The UAV controller includes a device configured to communicate with a radio access network (RAN #108). The UAV controller may comprise, for example, a radio frequency (RF) remote control (RC) device or an iPhone (smartphone).”

Huge tech companies file loads of patents throughout the year, and this may just be the company covering off all future possibilities.

But, it certainly makes sense for Apple to corner the drone market if they can.



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