Apple eyeing ways to launch apps in conjunction with an accessory
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Apple eyeing ways to launch apps in conjunction with an accessory

Based on a new Apple patent (20120081207), Apple is working on ways in which attaching a peripheral to an iOS device would launch a specific application.

In some embodiments, the mobile computing device can determine whether it is in a state that allows launching of an application and/or can determine whether the application or application type requested in the launch command is available for launching. In response to the request, and if the mobile computing device is capable, the mobile computing device can launch the application.
The mobile computing device can also send a positive acknowledgment message to the accessory indicating that the application may be launched.

An open communication session message may also be sent to the accessory. In response thereto the accessory can open a communication session and interoperate with the application. The inventors are Shyam Toprani, Paul Holden, Emily Clark Schubert, Thomas Alsina and Scott Forstall.

In a related patent (number 20120083208) Apple shows it's working on wireless accessory device pairing transfer between multiple host devices. Per the patent, a wireless communications system includes an accessory device and multiple host devices. A host device pairs wirelessly with an accessory device using a unique link key, detects a primary trigger event and responds by transferring automatically its pairing with the accessory device to a second host device while all devices remain within wireless range of each other.

The pairing transfer involves communicating the link key to the second host device, unpairing the accessory device from the first host device, and establishing a wireless pairing of the accessory device to the second host device. The primary trigger event can involve establishing a ported connection between host devices. A secondary trigger event results in the first host device automatically reclaiming its pairing with the accessory device.

An accessory device can also select and pair with one of multiple host devices in response to a specific user gesture detected by the accessory device. The inventors are Michael J. Giles, Jack I-Chieh Fu, Christopher T. Mullens, Craig P. Dooley and Adrian E. Sun.

Apple has also been granted a patent (number 20120081102) for an audio jack with ground detect. The invention involves ircuits, methods, and apparatus that provide an audio receptacle that can detect the presence of an audio jack without using mechanical switches or other such mechanical mechanisms. One example provides an audio receptacle having two contacts that may be electrically connected when an audio jack is inserted.

When no audio jack is inserted into the audio receptacle, the two ground contacts may not be connected. When an audio jack is inserted into the audio receptacle, the resulting closed circuit may be detected and used to activate or otherwise turn on one or more audio circuits in or associated with the audio receptacle. Conversely, when no audio jack is inserted, the resulting open circuit may be detected and used to deactivate or otherwise turn off or reduce power in one or more audio circuits in or associated with the audio receptacle. The inventors are Zhen Gao, Nathan Johanningsmier, Casey Hardy and Chiachi Wu.

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