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Apple’s iPhone Might Be Getting Lasers

Apple is considering fitting lasers to future iPhones and Apple Watches according a new patent.

According to a report by Patently Apple, the Cupertino based tech company is looking to add Horizontal Cavity Surface-Emitting Lasers (HCSEL) under the display, which could be used to upgrade functionality in a number of different ways.

The most likely application of the under display HCSEL would be the improvement of biometrics, with improved Face ID and potentially the return of Touch ID.

With an increased focus on virtual reality for both work and gaming in the technology market, the new technology could also be used with watches to “gather performance metrics for the user’s interaction with an augmented or virtual world,” according to the patent.

Health and fitness capabilities are also potentially getting a boost.

“Health and fitness data may be used to provide insights into a user’s general wellness, or may be used as positive feedback to individuals using technology to pursue wellness goals.”

The implementation of lasers may potentially lead to air quality analysis features “in combination with a photodetector”, something that has become increasingly of concern following the COVID-19 pandemic and the mould caused by the NSW floods.

Finally, the patent also suggests upgraded camera functionality, something that makes sense as the current Pro iPhones use LiDAR for autofocus.

“In some cases, one or more of the camera 1010, components 1014, and/or I/O devices 1016 may include one or an array of HCSELs or optoelectronic devices.”

This patent doesn’t confirm anything, and it may end up resulting in nothing for Apple. As advanced as some of these features are, we will have to wait for Apple to confirm the implementation of HCSEL.

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