Apple files patent for technology that could tell car owners to replace broken windscreens

Time 8:10 am, December 1, 2020

Technology giant Apple has submitted a patent for a system that could detect if a car’s windscreen is damaged, tell the owner to get it fixed or potentially organise the repair itself. 

The patent was submitted in August 2020 and published November. It’s a good indicator that Apple is heading in the direction of developing safety or autonomous car technology, rather than a complete model — for now.

The patent document talks about how the technology could use an ‘infrared-light-blocking layer or other’ to detect when the glass has broken.

It could even be used to detect when the car windows are damaged but not yet visible.

The patent adds that the ‘control circuitry may send an email message or other message to a user that informs the user of the detected crack,’ which could be a very expensive way to spot a crack but it goes as far as to say the car may sort it out itself.

The patent also says: ‘Vehicle may also schedule the service appointment automatically without intervention by the user or following a brief confirmation from the user.’

However, so far this is just an outline of what the technology could do.

Rebecca Chaplin's avatar

Rebecca has been a motoring and business journalist since 2014, previously writing and presenting for titles such as the Press Association, Auto Express and Car Buyer. She has worked in many roles for Car Dealer Magazine’s publisher Blackball Media including head of editorial.

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