A bunch of new Apple patents have appeared at the U.S. Patent & Trademark Office today, revealing the company’s efforts on developing ways to improve support for hearing impaired users, as noted by Patently Apple. These patents highlight Apple’s plans to enhance haptics & accessibility options in future iOS devices for aiding the hearing impaired.
The first patent is aimed at improving haptics system found in iOS devices by incorporating a low profile linear vibrational motor. As a result, future iOS devices will provide superior haptic feedback to a variety of applications relating to buttons, dials, the keypad and alert functions.
In addition, a couple of accessibility patents related to hearing were also filed today. The first one labelled as “Hearing assistance system for providing consistent human speech”, is intended to overcome issues faced by hearing impaired when listening to inconsistent speech patterns, by developing a method for providing consistent speech through a dedicated audio processing component in iOS devices.
The other accessibility patent named “Providing notification sounds in a customizable manner” shows a notification that gives users audible or visual alerts corresponding to an external event such as a doorbell or fire alarm. Apple is working to process or enhance such audio signals used by a hearing aid devices.