Oops, gone! If not protected by a strong case, the smartphones, now slim and wider than ever, can get cracked and the price of the screen clearly makes the person to think twice before getting it repaired. The prices are comparable to desktop PCs while the features are even more.
Hence, securing the mobile phones from accidental damage is one thing each company strives to excel at. AFPS is an Active Fall Protection System invented and patented by Apple for the same. It may look hypothetical for today, but will be there as a part of iPhone 7 of iPhone 8 and it will not be a surprise anymore.
Introduction to the Patent
Patent number 8903519 is a proud moment for the Apple team to get the technology for future Apple phones which can make the impact of dropping the phone subsidized as much as possible. The most sensitive parts of the mobile are the camera and the screen which, when absorbs the impact goes bad at a greater certainty.
List of Sensors Going to Join Hands in Detection of Phone Fall
With an addition of ultrasonic sensors, the already existing GPS, Gyroscopes, on board accelerometers are used in order to detect that the phone is falling. The system is capable of estimating the time of impact, the speed of descent and the centre of gravity (The part of the phone which is going to eat most of the impact).
Action Taken When the Fall is Detected
When the central processing system detects the free falling state, it will activate the rotors, vibration motors and any other possible additions such as small rocket like units. The processor can then control all the on-board available rotors and more to realign the phone in the air to reduce the impact. The orbital inclination can easily be changed by driving the vibration motor. This will be made in order to rotate the phone so as to concentrate the impact on the side of the phone or on the rear.
A Step Ahead in Extreme Ideation
The speed of impact can be reduced easily by the use of miniaturized gas canisters which, when activated exert the thrust force so as to slow down the impact and also in controlling the center of gravity in parallel. The idea is patented, but the options it has raised and the innovation paths it has lit up are huge. There is no real phone with such an intelligent option yet because of safety concerns, pricing and the reliability.
The idea is well structured and the engineering advances in MEMS and nanotechnology will definitely make this possible in the years to come. Apple has never settled for average and does the power of generation of patents. Hence, though the idea today seems impossible for the naive many and a few geeks, it is possible is what the team believes.