Apple has yet another patent, this time it’s titles “Camera as Input Interface” that would have the ability for the iPhone’s camera to be used for other features such as fast forwarding or rewinding your voicemail… with the swipe of your finger. In addition to the voice mail commands the camera lens could be used to navigate around the display.
According to the official description: “A portable handheld electronic device contains a camera lens and accelerometer to allow a user to control voice mail and call features by swiping his finger across the camera lens and/or tapping the device. Therefore, the user can comfortably input commands into the device with a single hand and without needing to move the phone away from his ear to apply these inputs. In another embodiment, the camera lens can also be used to control navigation of the display screen or a displayed document of the device. For example, if a user wishes to shift a scrollbar for a page displayed on the screen downwards to view the bottom of the page, the user should move his finger over the camera lens in an analogous downward direction.”
This could eventually be very useful… imagine this in conjunction with multitasking. Possibly the home button will eventually be eliminated and the screen will get bigger. What do you think?