We told you that Apple is pretty serious about the mobile navigation feature on it’s iPhone.
They have already patented most of the mapping and navigation features used currently on their handsets Mapping app.
Well, that patent app was more or less about the past. But as we all know Steve Jobs likes to look into the future, not the past. So do we.
And we recently got a glimpse what a future iPhone firmware upgrades might bring to your navigation app – a tight integration with your calendar app and address book.
At least that’s what Apple describes in a patent application named “Integrated calendar and map applications in a mobile device“.
The way it works is pretty obvious.
You enter your scheduling data – meetings, appointments, etc; to your calendar app. If the person’s name you are meeting with is in your address book, software automatically pre-fills you calendar entry from there. If physical address information is available, it then automatically associates this data with the location on the map.
Of course, you can enter the location info manually as well. E.g. when you are meeting someone for lunch in a cafe. You fill in cafe name and then the iPhone finds it’s location on the map and let’s you associate it with the meeting info.
But that’s only a beginning.
With all the data on your device and already cross referenced, many new capabilities to make your life easier open up.
If you have several meetings in different places scheduled throughout the day, your iPhone can map out the best route to each meeting. Using routing and traffic info it can even advice on how much time you will need to get there.
Your iPhone can also monitor your location, and ping you that you have to leave for the next meeting now, if you don’t want to be late. Or, if you are stuck in traffic and gonna be late anyway, it will prompt you to send a pre-selected message with a single touch.
For years I’ve been reading about how the new mobile devices will start acting like smart personal assistants for us. You know – buying tickets and groceries, scheduling meetings, suggesting the nearest public loo when I’m in a pinch… But years go by and they never seem to get there.
Well, when implemented, this integration between Mapping and Calendar apps might make the iPhone the first mobile device that actually can act smart on itself and make my life easier at least in some cases.
If you’d like to read full patent app, you can download it here (*.pdf, 2.3 MB).
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