Apple patent would let devices ID users by their heart beats
TweetFollow Us on Twitter

Apple patent would let devices ID users by their heart beats

Forget passwords and fingerprint technology. Apple is eyeing ways in which its devices can identity users by their heart beat. An Apple patent (number 20100113950) for a seamlessly embedded heart rate monitor has appeared at the US Patent & Trademark Office.

The patent is directed to an electronic device having an integrated sensor for detecting a user's cardiac activity and cardiac electrical signals. The electronic device can include a heart sensor having several leads for detecting a user's cardiac signals. The leads can be coupled to interior surfaces of the electronic device housing to hide the sensor from view, such that electrical signals generated by the user can be transmitted from the user's skin through the electronic device housing to the leads. In some embodiments, the leads can be coupled to pads placed on the exterior of the housing.

The pads and housing can be finished to ensure that the pads are not visibly or haptically distinguishable on the device, thus improving the aesthetic qualities of the device. Using the detected signals, the electronic device can identify or authenticate the user and perform an operation based on the identity of the user. In some embodiments, the electronic device can determine the user's mood from the cardiac signals and provide data related to the user's mood. The inventors are Gloria Lin, Taido Nakajima, Pareet Rahul and Andrew Hodge.

Here's Apple's background and summary of the invention: "Many electronic devices are used to store personal or confidential information. In particular, portable electronic devices such as cellular telephones, personal assistants, and music players are often used to store or access e-mail, contact lists, communications history, remotely accessed accounts (e.g., telephone, banking or credit card accounts), or other information that a user may regard as personal or private. In addition, several users may use the same electronic device.

"For example, several users in a household may use the same computer or portable music player. As another example, a user may lend an electronic device to a friend (e.g., lend an iPod, available from Apple Inc. to a friend for a workout or a trip). To enhance each user's experience with the electronic device, the electronic device can include several profiles that can be loaded and provided to the users of the device. Each profile can be associated with a particular user, and include several settings that allow the electronic device interface user interaction components, and available data or applications to be personalized for the user.

"The electronic device can use several approaches to identify the user of the electronic device and provide access to the user's private and personal information, or to load the user's personal profile. In some embodiments, the electronic device can identify or authenticate a user based on an input provided by the user, such as a password or key provided using an input mechanism. In some embodiments, the electronic device can include one or more sensors operative to detect a fingerprint, voice print, facial features, or other biometric characteristics of a user.

"Other biometric-based approaches can be used to authenticate a user. In some embodiments, an electronic device can authenticate a user based on the attributes of the user's heartbeat. For example, the durations of particular portions of a user's heart rhythm, or the relative size of peaks of a user's electrocardiogram (EKG) can be processed and compared to a stored profile to authenticate a user of the device. To detect a user's heartbeat or heart rhythm, however, the electronic device must provide at least two leads that the user contacts to detect the user's cardiac signals.

"Although the leads can simply be placed on the exterior surface of the device housing, for example in a defined location where the user may place a finger, this approach is not aesthetically pleasing, and may cause some prospective buyers to consider other devices. In addition, such an approach may require the user to perform a specific authentication action--viz., placing a finger on the one or more leads, then unlocking or accessing the electronic device features (e.g., by moving a slider across the screen). This additional step may in fact be so encumbering that users disable the authentication feature and instead use an unsecured electronic device.

"This is directed to an electronic device having a seamlessly integrated cardiac sensor. The cardiac sensor can be integrated in any suitable portion of the electronic device, including for example a portion with which the user is typically in contact (e.g., an input mechanism or a housing held by the user), or metallic or conductive portions of the device.

"The electronic device can include any suitable type of electronic device, including for example a portable electronic device that the user may hold in hand (e.g., a portable media player or a cellular telephone), a larger portable electronic device (e.g., a laptop computer), or a substantially fixed electronic device. The electronic device may include software or hardware operative to process the output of a cardiac sensor to extract, from the received output, characteristics of the user's heartbeat, heart rate, or other cardiac signals. For example, the electronic device may extract one or more characteristic durations associated with the user's heart rate. As another example, the electronic device may extract one or more characteristic amplitudes or amplitude ratios associated with the user's heart rate.

"Once the electronic device has identified one or more characteristics of the user's heart rate, heartbeat, or other cardiac signals, the electronic device can compare the one or more identified characteristics with cardiac signal characteristics of authorized users that have been stored in memory. In response to determining that the identified characteristics correspond to those of an authorized user (e.g., match those stored in memory), the electronic device can provide the user with access to the electronic device and load the identified user's personal settings and data.

"To determine the user's heart rate, heartbeat, or other cardiac signals, the electronic device can include one or more sensors embedded in the device. The one or more sensors can include leads for receiving electrical signals from the user's heart. For example, the one or more sensors can include leads associated with the user's left and right sides, and lead associated with the ground. To provide an electrical signal from the user to the processing circuitry, the leads can be exposed such that the user may directly contact the leads, or may instead or in addition be coupled to an electrically conductive portion of the device enclosure (e.g., a metallic bezel or housing forming the exterior of the device).

"Because each electronic device can include several leads, the leads may be electrically isolated to avoid shorting or interference among leads. In some embodiments, an electrically isolating component can be inserted between adjacent leads. Alternatively, if the electronic device enclosure is constructed from a material having insufficient conductivity for transmitting detected cardiac electrical signals, the distance along the enclosure between adjacent leads can be sufficient to isolate the leads. In addition, to ensure that the aesthetic appeal and appearance of the electronic device is retained, one or more of the isolating components, the leads themselves, and the device enclosure can be finished using a suitable process to disguise the leads.

"In some embodiments, if the electrical conductivity of portions of the electronic device enclosure and the leads are suitably selected and designed, the leads can be positioned underneath the exterior surface of the enclosure while providing sufficient conductivity for detecting cardiac electrical signals and avoiding shorting or interference between adjacent leads. For example, the sensor leads can be constructed from a silver based compound having high electrical conductivity, while the electronic device enclosure can be constructed from steel and aluminum, both having lower electrical conductivity. By placing several leads at substantially larger distances apart along the electronic device enclosure than the thickness of the enclosure, electronic signals can be transmitted through the steel or aluminum enclosure to a silver based lead underneath the enclosure, but not along the surface of the enclosure to cause adjacent leads to short."

 

Community Search:
MacTech Search:

Software Updates via MacUpdate

Latest Forum Discussions

See All

Can PokeMatch help you find love with Po...
The unofficial Pokemon GO companion app space has exploded almost as fast as the game itself over the last few weeks. Aspiring app developers, many of them working solo, have given us apps that locate Pokemon, keep track of the server status, and... | Read more »
How to get started with Prisma
If there's one thing people like to do more than taking pictures with their smartphones, it's tinkering with those photos in some way. Numerous apps have sprung up over the last several years that allow you to use filters and special effects to... | Read more »
6 Pokemon GO updates you can expect, acc...
Pokemon GO had a scheduled appearance at this year's San Diego Comic-Con for a while, but it was only relatively close to the show that it was upgraded to a spot in Hall H. That's the biggest venue at SDCC, one usually reserved for the largest... | Read more »
How to evolve Eevee in Pokemon GO
By now, almost everyone should be hip to how to evolve Pokemon in Pokemon GO (and if not, there's a guide for that). Just gather enough candy of the appropriate type, feed them all to the Pokemon, and evolution happens. It's a miracle that would... | Read more »
CSR Racing 2: Guide to all game modes
It might not seem like there are all that many ways to go fast in a straight line, but CSR Racing 2 begs to differ. [Read more] | Read more »
Bulb Boy (Games)
Bulb Boy 1.0 Device: iOS Universal Category: Games Price: $2.99, Version: 1.0 (iTunes) Description: Multi-award winning 2D point & click horror adventure about a boy with a glowing head. | Read more »
5 top free emoji keyboard apps
If we're not at peak emoji yet as a society, it feels like we definitely should be. The emoji concept has gone far beyond what anyone in Japan could have envisioned when the people there unleashed it on an unsuspecting world, but the West has... | Read more »
How to unlock more characters in Disney...
One of the big charms of Disney Emoji Blitz is seeing a wide variety of beloved Disney and Pixar characters transformed into smiling emojis. Even someone like the sneaky Randall from Monsters Inc., who probably never cracked a smile on film, is... | Read more »
Cubway (Games)
Cubway 1.0 Device: iOS Universal Category: Games Price: $1.99, Version: 1.0 (iTunes) Description: Cubway is a journey with an abstract story of lifecycle of rebirth, called Samsara. Guide the cube through the long way full of dangers... | Read more »
Colorcube (Games)
Colorcube 1.0 Device: iOS Universal Category: Games Price: $1.99, Version: 1.0 (iTunes) Description: Turn pieces and blend colours in this minimal yet visually stunning puzzler.Over 200 handcrafted and challenging levels. Features... | Read more »

Price Scanner via MacPrices.net

GSK Rheumatoid Arthritis Study Leverages iPho...
Global healthcare products company GlaxoSmithKline (GSK) says that since 2014 they have begun transforming the way they conduct research, by leveraging state-of-the-art digital technologies — a... Read more
Clearance 12-inch Retina MacBooks, Apple refu...
Apple has Certified Refurbished 2015 12″ Retina MacBooks available starting at $929. Apple will include a standard one-year warranty with each MacBook, and shipping is free. The following... Read more
13-inch Retina MacBook Pros on sale for up to...
B&H Photo has 13″ Retina MacBook Pros on sale for up to $150 off MSRP. Shipping is free, and B&H charges NY tax only: - 13″ 2.7GHz/128GB Retina MacBook Pro: $1199 $100 off MSRP - 13″ 2.7GHz/... Read more
13-inch 1.6GHz/128GB MacBook Air on sale for...
Amazon has the 13″ 1.6GHz/128GB MacBook Air on sale for $200 off MSRP for a limited time. Shipping is free: - 13″ 1.6GHz/128GB MacBook Air (sku MMGF2LL/A): $799.99 $200 off MSRP Their price is the... Read more
13-inch 1.6GHz/256GB MacBook Air on sale for...
Amazon has the 13″ 1.6GHz/256GB MacBook Air on sale for $200 off MSRP for a limited time. Shipping is free: - 13″ 1.6GHz/256GB MacBook Air (sku MMGG2LL/A): $999.99 $200 off MSRP Their price is the... Read more
Free iOS Business App notably* Helps Service...
PayStudio Inc. has introduced their new business app notably* 1.0, developed for iPhone and iPod touch. notably* was specifically developed to help service and trade professionals go digital and... Read more
27-inch iMacs on sale for $200 off MSRP
Amazon has 27″ iMacs on sale for $200 off MSRP including free shipping: - 27″ 3.3GHz iMac 5K: $2099 $200 off MSRP - 27″ 3.2GHz/1TB Fusion iMac 5K: $1799.99 $200 off MSRP - 27″ 3.2GHz/1TB HD iMac 5K... Read more
Mac Pros on sale for $200 off MSRP
B&H Photo has Mac Pros on sale for $200 off MSRP. Shipping is free, and B&H charges sales tax in NY only: - 3.7GHz 4-core Mac Pro: $2799, $200 off MSRP - 3.5GHz 6-core Mac Pro: $3799, $200... Read more
Save up to $600 with Apple refurbished Mac Pr...
Apple has Certified Refurbished Mac Pros available for up to $600 off the cost of new models. An Apple one-year warranty is included with each Mac Pro, and shipping is free. The following... Read more
Apple price trackers, updated continuously
Scan our Apple Price Trackers for the latest information on sales, bundles, and availability on systems from Apple’s authorized internet/catalog resellers. We update the trackers continuously: - 15″... Read more

Jobs Board

*Apple* Retail - Multiple Positions, Willow...
Job Description:SalesSpecialist - Retail Customer Service and SalesTransform Apple Store visitors into loyal Apple customers. When customers enter the store, Read more
*Apple* Evangelist - JAMF Software (United S...
The Apple Evangelist is responsible for building and cultivating strategic relationships with Apple 's small and mid-market business development field teams. This Read more
*Apple* Solutions Consultant - APPLE (United...
Job Summary As an Apple Solutions Consultant, you'll be the link between our future customers and our products. You'll showcase your entrepreneurial spirit as you Read more
*Apple* Professional Learning Specialist - A...
Job Summary The Apple Professional Learning Specialist is a full-time position for one year with Apple in the Phoenix, AZ area. This position requires a high Read more
*Apple* Picker - Apple Hill Orchard (United...
Apple Hill Orchard, Co. Rte. 21,Whitehall, NY 9/7/16-10/228/16. Pick fresh market or processing apples Productivity of 60 boxes and 80 boxes processing fruit per Read more
All contents are Copyright 1984-2011 by Xplain Corporation. All rights reserved. Theme designed by Icreon.