Apple's latest patent has iWatch written all over it

Setting your phone to not bother you during certain times is still a bit of a confused affair. You may forget to activate on inactivate it, leading to unwelcome disruptions or missed information. Some services will silence your device by default when in a scheduled meeting, but what about when you don't have something in your calendar? A newly granted Apple patent might help.

The patent takes your known activity level, and uses it to gauge when you should or should not be bothered. If you're in a state of "high activity", iOS could send your device(s) into a state of shutting all the way up. The application title, "Method and Apparatus for Automatically Adjusting the Operation of Notifications Based on Changes in a Physical Activity Level", suggests this is all about health.

While getting a text or call may not be a big deal to some, it will alleviate some of the distractions we face. Runners in busy cities will likely find this especially useful, as will anyone who just doesn't want emails pinging them every few minutes while on the treadmill or (possibly) lifting weights.

In addition to not bugging you when you're active, Apple's patent covers your inactivity as well. The patent plans for notifications to be sent when you're inactive for a period of time, encouraging you to do something with your lazy self. The app also covers brief activity spikes, like running to catch a train. In those instances, the instant-on do not disturb mode wouldn't kick in.

The patent doesn't note just how it will gauge activity level, though. Movement seems to be a big point, but it could come into play with heartbeat, too. If an iWatch (or iTime, whatever Apple is going to call it) has a heart-rate monitor — and there's no reason to think it won't — this patent could get a lot more interesting.

Via: Apple Insider