It seems as though Apple’s new patent may be putting an end to the era of bright phone screens at concerts. Last week, Apple was awarded a US patent that will force your iPhone camera and video functions to be disabled at various concert venues. The venues will have infrared signals strategically placed around certain areas that will send messages to iPhone users camera to shut down. On the illustration, the words “RECORDING DISABLED” appears across the users’ screen while trying to record a performance.
This new patent will affect 101 million uses in the United States and 700 million users world wide. The camera disabled license places fans at a disadvantage because no one will be able to use this feature for a concert. Then it can be used prevent protesters from spreading their message if these infrared signals are placed in an area of protestors. Incidents like this are being considered “kill switch” for iPhone users.
On the other hand, artists can protect their brand because their concert format doesn’t change. When fans upload videos of concerts on Instagram, they are giving their following a snippet of a show. Artists such as Adele, have expressed her want for fans to “enjoy it in real life, instead of through your camera.” Fans will be able fully to absorb the artistry in the music and the concert. The Lumineers, Dave Chappelle, and Alicia Keys have taken measure into their hands by using neoprene pouches made by the a company named Yondr. They require each fan to place their phone in a pouch which then locks up preventing use within the venue. If a fan needs to use their phone, they will have to step outside for security to open pouch using a unique device. However, there are artists such as Radiohead, who encouraged their fans to record their shows on Periscope.
If this patent is used, this will make the second time the company has imposed on their customer’s consent. In 2014 the company collaborated with U2 to release their free album Songs of Innocence to half a billion iTunes users. It brings to question how much control iPhone users have over their phones?
Apple hasn’t confirmed any plans to implement this new patent with their iPhone products. If you’re interested in reading the patent, you can find it on the USPTO website.