Microsoft’s latest patent lets you issue voice commands silently

Embarrassed of issuing voice commands in public or shouting over others to communicate with a smart speaker? Microsoft might have the answer with tech that claims it can understand voice commands ushered in near silence.

Apple found guilty of infringing WiLan patents, must pay $145 million

Apple was ordered by a California jury to pay WiLan, a Canadian patent licensing company, the sum of $145.1 million for damages after some iPhone models were found to use two of WiLan's wireless communications technology patents.

Apple patents a trio of ideas to fix its MacBook keyboard

Could a giant Touch Bar that replaces the MacBook Pro's keyboard help fix Apple's woes when it comes to its keyboard failures? Apple hopes so, and one of its patents calls for a virtual keyboard on a dual-screen laptop.

Nvidia’s ‘infinite resolution’ patent could change gaming forever

Nvidia filed a patent for a technology that could alter the way PC games look and perform. Nvidia calls it "infinite resolution" and it's effectively a clever way of using vector graphics to replace static textures in games.
Emerging Tech

Amazon delivery drone may use lights and music when it shows up at your home

Amazon noted in its latest patent that its customers "may be alarmed or confused" when one of its noisy delivery drones approaches their property. With that in mind, it's come up with a few possible solutions.

Ford tries to patent a car with autonomous electric motorcycle built in

Ford applied for a patent for an unexpected design, a car with an integrated electric-powered motorcycle. Ford's design lets the driver park the car outside the city and take the EV bike to their final destination.

Oculus wants to stretch your skin to see what it feels like to be human

In patents filings made public this week, Oculus describes a couple different technologies that could make its virtual reality even more immersive. The patent filings describe simulating touch with a "skin stretch" instrument

Latest Apple patents hint at souped-up Apple Pencil that can measure 3D objects

Apple has been awarded new patents that hint at a seriously upgraded Apple Pencil. There are two patents in total, one relating to a modular Apple Pencil, and the other to using the stylus to measure 3D objects.

Apple files patent for a crumb-resistant MacBook keyboard

According to a patent application made public on Thursday, Apple could be developing a new MacBook keyboard designed to prevent crumbs and dust from getting those super-shallow MacBook keys stuck. 

Latest Microsoft patent hints at mobile device with hardware laptop mode

The most recent Microsoft patent filing indicates that it could be working on a Surface Phone device with a hardware-based laptop mode which, along with Project Andromeda, would create a unique mobile device.

Patent filings suggest Microsoft could be gearing up for a Surface Pen revamp

The trusty Surface Pen is overdue for an update, and it looks like Microsoft knows that. We got a look at the latest in a series of recent patent filings for upcoming Surface Pen features.

Apple’s latest patents hint at sleep tracker and continued work on AR

Apple has been awarded a series of five patents this week, including one that hints at the company's work on sleep tracking, and an update to its efforts in augmented reality, among others.
Emerging Tech

Amazon’s delivery drones could hitch rides on trucks to save power

Amazon is serious about its Prime Air drone delivery plan, and has a busy R&D team working on the project. Its latest idea may seem a little puzzling, however, as it describes allowing drones to hitch rides on trucks.

Playstation VR could improve with new motion controller patents from Sony

There is one factor that holds PlayStation VR back from achieving more: The Move controllers. If two patents filed by Sony Interactive Entertainment are anything to go by, a new motion controller could be on its way.

Canon filed more than 3,000 patents in 2017, keeping up a 32-year streak

Canon patents that were approved in the U.S. last year averaged roughly nine patent applications every day, topping over 3,000. That's the 32nd year in a row that the company has made the top five.

Apple’s digital assistant Siri could soon be whispering sweet nothings to you

There may be times, such as when you're out and about, when you'd prefer Siri to whisper its response, allowing for more discreet exchanges. Well, it seems Apple is looking into the idea.

Using drones to charge your EV while you’re driving is Amazon’s latest idea

You're driving along in your EV and you notice it's low on power, so you summon a drone for a top up. That's the idea outlined in Amazon's latest patent, granted by the USPTO earlier this month.
Emerging Tech

Walmart, like Amazon, is pondering a floating warehouse for drone deliveries

Sounding no less wacky than when it was suggested by Amazon, rival Walmart is considering building a giant floating warehouse from which its drones can make deliveries to customers.