The United States Patent and Trademark Office on Tuesday published a group of new patents granted to Apple. One of the more interesting patents covers an Apple Pencil stylus that offers iPhone support as well as haptic feedback. (Via Patently Apple)
The patent drawings feature an Apple Pencil with an axial haptic feedback component and, in some configurations, an axial haptic feedback component which can include a bimorph actuator.
By providing two different types of haptic feedback components (#1340a and #1340b), the touch sensitive device (Apple Pencil) is configured to simultaneously provide haptic feedback associated with a variety of directionalities or degrees of freedom. In this manner, the amount of haptic feedback perceived by the user is magnified.
In the patent abstract, Apple described several uses for haptic feedback (Via iDownloadBlog):
- Generate a haptic feedback response based on the amount of contact with the screen
- Simulate the physical sensation of moving a paintbrush across a canvas
- Simulate a difference between a wet paintbrush and a dry paintbrush
- Simulate moving a paintbrush across a rough surface like wood
- Simulate the effect of a pencil rubbing against an edge of a piece of paper
The “touch-sensitive device” could be referring to any iOS device, including an iPhone. Multiple rumors have claimed Apple is working on Apple Pencil compatibility for the iPhone.
Apple is granted numerous patents each year, and the granting of a patent doesn’t necessarily mean the Cupertino firm will implement an invention in an actual product.