Apple Patent Enlightens Multiple Flashes

Pretty much every single smart phone around comes equipped with a camera or two. However, there are very good reasons why these portable wonders haven't replaced DSLR cameras quite yet. While phone companies globally are working hard to get phone cameras with variable shutter speeds, adjustable aperture settings, and even replaceable lenses, Apple has now taken steps to try to improve the camera's infamous reputation of taking horrible low light pictures. Their solution: synchronized flashes.

Apple has filed yet another patent, this time focusing on getting multiple devices to synchronize their flashes while a master unit takes the actual photo. The main device would first snap a preliminary shot and, after analyzing the photo, configure all the remote 'slave' devices for their flash duration and intensity, followed by a melodramatic blinding flash from all the connected devices to produce the final result. 

Note that we have used the word "devices" instead of "mobile phones" in the previous paragraph, meaning that this patent could eventually lead to your phone using everything from house lamps to tablets to professional camera photography equipment. However, knowing Apple, the technology would most likely link iOS devices together at first, and maybe even try to incorporate cross platform devices in the future. While this idea has been hanging around the photography industry for years now, this is the first time the idea has actually been applied to a patent. We hope to see other companies experiment with this kind of set-up in the future and come to an agreement with Apple concerning cross platform support.

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  • ingtar33
    considering the photography industry has used multiple flashes for decades i somehow doubt this patent will survive a challenge if approved.
  • teh_chem
    Anonymous said:
    I agree, ingtar. If this patent does get approved, though, I will lose absolutely all faith in the US patent system. This patent should never be approved.


    You have faith in the US Patent system...?
  • Other Comments
  • dgingeri
    Another Apple money grab at things that have been in use for ages...
    I really hope someone in the patent office gets a clue and declares this invalid.
  • ingtar33
    considering the photography industry has used multiple flashes for decades i somehow doubt this patent will survive a challenge if approved.
  • lunix
    Did anyone manage to find the Apple patent protecting "a software to retrieve existing patent filings, append the words 'on a mobile device' and submit the result as a new patent automatically" yet?