Those, who carry on multiple conversations at once are no doubt familiar with the embarrassing situation of posting a message into the wrong chat window. Fortunately, Apple is aware of this issue, and has a solution for it, the latest patent granted by the US Patent and Trademark Office and spotted by AppleInsider shows.
The patent application for “Generation of a user interface based on contacts” allows users to identify whom they are talking to in a second, thereby preventing the aforementioned embarrassing situation and the avalanche of “sorry, this wasn’t meant for you” messages.
To solve the issue, Apple basically inserts a photo of the contact during the iMessaging (email, MMS) session. For group chats, the messages are overlaid on top of one or more images, depending on how many active chats the user has.
In practice, the system recognizes that a user has received or is about to send an iMessage, email, MMS chat or similar correspondence, then identifies contacts associated with that message. A background image relating to the contact or contacts is then used to create a background on which the conversation will take place.
When a contact does not have an assigned photo, a generic male or female avatar may be used as the system intelligently selects gender based on stored contact information.
Also, the invention allows a dynamic modification of the background image, which is useful, especially with group chats. For example, if the user receives a message, the sender’s image gets highlighted.
The patent was first filed for in 2012 and credits Enrique E. Rodriguez as its inventor.