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Apple patent looks to create 'secure magnets' to unlock your device

Daniel Cooper, @danielwcooper
January 28, 2012
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It's an Apple patent application: please be aware this is unlikely to wind up in your next device, please fasten seat belts and fix your tray table in the fixed and upright position. Inside the bezel of your iDevice or Mac is a magnet that operates a switch -- that will only be activated when a "correlated" magnet inside a key-fob makes contact. That's the thinking behind Cupertino's newest patent application, attempting to turn magnets into a way of keeping your stuff secure. An example listed in the patent is using a stylus with specially encoded magnets to securely unlock an iPad, which we attribute to a zealous patent attorney and not a reversal of the "they blew it" rule. It may sound ridiculous when you first consider it, but given the magnetic-activation of the iPad 2's smart cover, it's not as outlandish as you believe. Still, we'll believe it if we see it in a couple of years.

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