A future Apple device could use new sensors and algorithms to accurately report on a person’s body size and shape, according to a new patent.
It’s said that the measurement system could even use sensors and features built into the HomePod mini, although it wouldn’t be required.
Right now, the devices required to do this kind of thing are large and cumbersome, making it unusable in most cases. By putting the technology into a phone, a watch, or even a pair of earbuds, Apple can help change all of that.
The patent was spotted by Patently Apple (opens in new tab) and discusses a number of different devices being used in different ways, all to help health and even shopping apps gain a better understanding of someone’s body shape and size.
In one instance, Apple suggests using a fixed device like a HomePod mini as a point of reference and then using portable devices like AirPods and iPhones at the same time.
It’s been suggested that the feature could be used in a couple of different ways. First, Apple could feed the data into health apps that could then possibly tailor the information they show based on the person’s own size and shape. But secondly, retailers could also use the information to ensure that customers are buying the correct size clothes to ensure that they fit correctly. That would also help ensure that returns would be reduced, something retailers would surely get behind.
The patent suggests that ultra-wideband (UWB) sensors could be used like those in Apple’s best iPhones and other devices. Other devices could also use sensors or a Wi-Fi connection to gather information on size and distance.
However, we should always remember that patents don’t necessarily mean products, and there is no guarantee that this will ever happen. However, the existence of a patent does at least confirm one thing — someone at Apple has worked on this enough to produce it.