The U.S. Patent and Trademark Office officially approved a series of patents for Apple Inc. for creating artificial group selfies while maintaining all protocols of social distancing. The new patent will enable users to take virtual selfies while isolating in their homes due to COVID-19 outbreaks, as millions of users around the world are restricted to their homes and observing a quarantine lifestyle for their health and safety.
The company acknowledges selfies as a popular mode of capturing valuable moments and creating memories. Millions of selfies are captured by users around the globe every day. Group selfies are also used for creating memories with friends and family to share them online. However, due to present circumstances and social distancing measures, it is hard to capture group selfies with friends and family.
Create group selfies
Apple’s new patent suggests synthetic group selfies by computing individual selfies and combining them into a single group image. The individual selfies can be images, videos, or live streaming videos.
The software will operate similarly to FaceTime, with the ability to invite multiple users to join the group selfie. The technology seems great for family and friends who are separated due to COVID-19 outbreaks and can not be with each other.
Synthetic group photos will be stored as multi-resource images that save all elements in the photo. This means that the user that creates the group selfie will be able to modify the sequence in the image and put users in a different position within the image. Therefore, synthetic group selfies would be created easily without trying to adjust several people within iPhone’s camera UI.
Apple and COVID-19
The patent application for synthetic group selfies was filed in 2018 meaning that Apple did not design the feature for the present global health crisis. However, it is more relevant than ever in the prevailing global COVID-19 pandemic. People physically cannot be with their family and friends because of precautionary social distancing measures. But, when this new feature releases, they would be able to create a virtual family picture to make up for the physical absence.
Discovered patent filings give an insight into the functionality of the upcoming products by tech companies. However, the released version may be subject to change.