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iPhone 6 rumor rollup for the week ending Nov. 16

Presence technology, trial production, a WWDC 2013 launch

By , Network World
November 16, 2012 12:07 PM ET
iPhone 6

Network World - You can trust iOSphere rumors emerging from China, because that's where the iPhone is manufactured. Just ask anyone. And since it's China, there are a lot of people to ask.

This week, we celebrate presence technology, which will let the iPhone 6 detect your heartbeat, paint you with infrared rays, sense your skin tone, hear you breathing, and probably even smell you.

CATCH UP: iPhone 6 rumor rollup for the week ending Nov. 9

You won't have to wait long. Those loquacious Chinese and History itself reveal Apple is about to start trial production runs of the Next iPhone. And you know what that means: It will be announced in the spring of 2013. Unless it's announced at the Worldwide Developers Conference in June of 2013.

You read it here second.

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"Forget the iPhone 5, Apple's seventh-generation iPhone is already in development, according to the latest rumors out of China where the device is manufactured." 
    -- a "staff reporter" for International Design Times, consigning iPhone 5 to the dustbin of history almost two months to the day after it was announced.

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iPhone 6 will have "presence technology" like radar and carbon dioxide sensing

The Patently Apple website, which "celebrates" Apple's Spirit of Innovation, is in high celebratory mode following the publication of an Apple patent application for "presence technology."

You may not be aware of the trend in advancing presence technology, or PT for short. But it's all about the device, in this case, the iPhone, detecting that Someone is drawing nigh, or perhaps, exiting stage left, and doing stuff that would be important, like activating the screen or switching off power.

Or, as Patently Apple helpfully explains, "Generally, Apple's invention is directed to user presence determination and related computing device functionality."

There are various ways in which this invention might be "embodied," according to the website. For example, "power saving and/or power efficiency may be realized" or the device may "provide an operating state based on the presence and/or absence of the user." Patently Apple has a tendency to say the same thing over and again, as here: "In response to a positive determination that the user is present or upon achieving a threshold probability that the user is present, the device may power up, exit a sleep mode, and/or provide some feedback to the user."

Heady stuff. Especially this part: "Bayesian optimal thresholds may be implemented that achieve desired performance." If you're not au courant with Bayesian probability theory you can check out what Wikipedia has to say about it

So, the invention uses sensors to detect presence or absence, and the iPhone responds. What kind of sensors, you ask. A radar sensor to "detect and/or locate a heartbeat in the room." A depth sensor using a whole flock of infrared-based techniques like "active IR time of flight" or "passive IR (motion detector)" or "passive IR thermal imaging (2D)," not to mention "stereo vision" and "polarization techniques."

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