Apple Files Patent to Allow Discreet 911 Calls


The US Patent and Trademark Office has published a patent for a "touch processing module" that can process input on a touch screen to detect fingerprints and translate a specific finger sequence into a command. There are reports the feature could also record live video or audio directly from the phone.

The feature would look for a sequence of fingerprints or applied pressure to trigger a 911 call which could be programmed to bypass the screenlock authentication and may also send user's location to the authorities.

USA Today reported that Apple's patent says dialing 911 can be "readily apparent to someone watching" and "may not be practical".

Currently, most major smartphones - including ones by Apple - have an option to make emergency calls without unlocking the device, but usually still require the user to be on the line with the emergency responder.

The patent adds that the technology could erase or hide certain personal data you might not want to share with others, such as social security numbers or a home address.

Apple (AAPL) was awarded a new patent for an iPhone dock that would include Siri and built in wireless charging, according to the Verge.

In September 2016, with the watchOS 3 update, Apple introduced the Emergency SOS feature for the Apple Watch to make it easier for users to get help.