Apple Patents Unlocking Methods

Float's Sandbox Web Browsing App Restricts Access in a Different Way

Industry News, Mobile Apps Comments (0)

A recent “TechCrunch” article announced that Apple has received patents for new iOS unlocking methods that determine the level of user access to device features and software.

Apple’s newly awarded patent describes a system wherein the method used by a user to unlock a device via gesture-based input would determine what apps are made available, as well as what hardware functions are available… The system Apple has patented also allows for gestures to unlock the phone directly into specific apps, so that one could launch the email app and keep a user within that bit of software exclusively, for instance. Other incarnations could limit access to certain phone features, including the camera and mic, or to in-app purchases, locking down a device for worry-free sharing with a child.

Sandbox settingsFloat has developed an app called Sandbox that has similar aims.

Sandbox is a Web browsing app available for all iOS devices (iPhone, iPod Touch, iPad) that restricts users to a predefined list of websites. Unlike traditional privacy applications that block specified websites, Sandbox allows users to access only a preapproved list of sites or a “whitelist.”

Using Sandbox, for example, a teacher can ensure students remain on track during a class project, accessing only material that the teacher has already selected. Similarly, a restaurant could limit iPad browsing to its online menu, or a brick-and-mortar retail outlet could enable its website for consumers to read reviews and watch interactive product videos.

Developing appropriate security for apps is one of our areas of expertise at Float. Try out Sandbox, then contact us to discuss your mobile security needs.

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Gary Woodill is a senior analyst with Float, as well as CEO of i5 Research. Gary conducts research and market analyses, as well as assessments and forecasting for emerging technologies. Gary is the co-editor of "Mastering Mobile Learning," author of “The Mobile Learning Edge,” and the co-author of “Training and Collaboration with Virtual Worlds.” He also presents at conferences and is the author of numerous articles and research reports on emerging learning technologies. Gary holds a doctor of education degree from the University of Toronto.

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On September 20, 2013
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