back to article Apple blueprints the iShoe

Providing further proof that the days of Apple Computer are far behind, the US Patent and Trademark Office published two of Cupertino's latest patent filings on Thursday: one for a head-mounted MP3 player, and a second for what might well be described as the iShoe. The first, Wireless Headset with Integrated Media Player, is …


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  1. Anonymous Coward
    Thumb Down

    more iCrap

    I wish they would spend more time getting the updates right for the current products.

  2. Anonymous Coward

    I've got a bluetooth headset

    that does exactly this already. It's not only got prior-art but current art as well. And on sale in a number of shops and across the web.

    As for wired ones, people have had wired handsfree on their phones since at least the late 90s (when I got my first set). Doesn't the iPhone come with the ability to use wired handsfree? If it does then it's been on the market over a year and IIRC that stops it being patented even without the extensive, well-known prior art. If it doesn't... well, it's slightly crappier than I already thought...

    Apple really do need to be banned from the Patent Office. The occasional gem (I'm sure there must have been one...) is by far outweighed by the torrent of crap they try to put through.

  3. Michael


    Patenting the obvious again, a headset to listen to music. What will they think of next?

  4. Charles Manning

    The start of pay per use and DRM in shoes?

    Shoes as a service?

  5. Sampler

    Apple try to patent something that already exists

    the headset sounds alot like my Jabra BT620's - bluetooth handsfree and music support.

    Supports A2DP for bluetooth remote contol of audio playback, has a rocker on the right ear for track forward and back, tapping the right ear pad pauses (or mutes if A2DP isn't supported).

    Left ear has a volume rocker and tap to answer an incoming call (device dependent music is paused) or tap once to make a voice dial or hold to re-dial last number.

    Have worked great with my HTC Prophet, Kaiser and now Touch Pro 2 and with the use of a bluetooth dongle they've hooked up to my old creative mp3 players over the years. (supporting up to two devices 1 call and 1 audio - thought they can both be the same device).

    But I forgot - Apple are the leaders in mobile phone and audio players - not win-mo and creative so they must've just invented it and the Jabra headset I've had for the past three years is all in my imagination...

    Hell - the device even has lights - blinks blue when on (you can turn that off) constant blue whilst in sync mode, red whilst charging and green when charged.

  6. Matthew 25

    jeez these are so obvious

    I thought they would have patents for these already. Like they do for tearms i**** and the word 'pod'. C'mon Steve get the whips out, your guys are slipping.

  7. Mark C 1

    Whatever ...

    Those of us thaf use Garmin GPS watches can ignore this .... I wear NIke Triaxes and change them when the watch says 500 miles have been done,

  8. Rab Sssss

    will the...

    Ishoe only work with Isocks?

  9. Individual #6/42

    Surely this deserves the response

    Apple talks cobblers.

  10. Anonymous Coward

    Apple have fallen (arches) for the oldest one in the book

    Oh dear, oh dear, oh dear! If you're going to patent the ridiculous then at least do it right.

    Problem: shoe wear that is not readily apparent.

    Solution: *one* sensor.

    So when the sensor says the shoe is worn out, is the shoe worn out or is the sensor worn out?

  11. Steve Taylor 3
    Thumb Up


    So all I have to do now is subscribe to my shoe's Twitter feed?

    Truly the modern world is... words fail me.

  12. Anonymous Coward

    Next they will patent "breathing"

    Now apple just has to figure out how to make your shoes completely non functional once a certain wear point has been reached so you will be sure to go and buy a new pair.

  13. James O'Brien
    Paris Hilton

    @Mark C 1

    And when that comes to taking a ride in ye ol' car? I guess you buy alot of shoes then eh?

  14. Dave Ross

    Would this be the fabled...

    iRan product we have heard soooo much about?

  15. John Angelico

    And I thought they were ...

    ...trying to patent Maxwell Smart's ShoePhone.

    Maybe they did, they did tee a puddy-tat, but figured that there was too much prior art, so then went for the sensor instead.

  16. richard 69
    Jobs Halo


    apple haven't claimed to have invented anything, they've just taken shite techie gadgets and made them more stylish and easier to use. always have....always will.

    some techies just cannot admit that they secretly lurve the white shiny no, we're technical, therefore intelligent, therefore we have to have lots of buttons and take things apart to prove how great we the wife.....who actually fancies your cousin with his new ipod......fuckwits

  17. Anonymous Coward

    Prior art....

    ....I have shoes that have such a sensor in the, they brake "shoes" or pads. When a certain amount of wear is reached a light comes on my dashboard. However, this is better than the ipoo, there is a back up mechanical sensor, a little bit of metal that makes a bloody racket once that level is reached.

    My patent I've sent of.

    Computer keyboards have print on them, over time this may wear out. We will put a sensor in someones head that detects the print is fading and alerts them by visual means , despite the keyboard still working, that it is time to go and buy a new ikeyboard ($99 / £99) from all Apple stockets.

  18. Cameron Colley

    Please, please let Nokia win.

    At least Nokia actually innovated once.

  19. arran
    Jobs Halo

    Lysergic acid diethylamide

    Jobs has obviously been taking it again.

  20. Haku


    A small capsule of acid in the heel will be triggered for release once Apple decide the shoe needs replacing, the acid will 'harmlessly' dissolve the sole of the shoe, rendering it useless and forcing you to buy a new pair. The only drawback is if you're wearing them at the time you'll need to seek immediate medical help, plus you'll need to store them in an acid-proof container when not in use so when the soles do dissolve they don't eat through your floor.

    Hmm, I think I've been watching too much "Better Off Ted" recently... (great show)

  21. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Umm, they *do* have a point actually..

    Sorry to be a dissenting voice here - if you knew something about shoes you'd know that worn heels aren't as innocent a problem as it appears :-).

    Hotel porters look at people's shoes because you can tell from what they wear how much attention they pay to appearance - and it's not even a new idea either, where do you think "well heeled" comes from as an expression?

    That's just the cosmetic side of things.

    The situation is several shades worse for ladies wearing high heels, but in general a worn heel causes the foot to angle, which is very bad news as your entire body weight rests on it, every step you make. If they start to angle, ankles are at risk (ladies with worn high heels have the additional risk of plenty of twisting leverage to make a good mess of the ankle).

    I suggest that those that still wear decent shoes that can be repaired do a quick check and bring in shoes that need new heels. It will probably cost less than the proposed Apple sensor, the cobbler gets some work and your ankles will have less problems. And it looks better too.

    Thank you and good night..

  22. magnetik
    Dead Vulture

    Look, my show is worn out

    "olves that vexing problem of knowing exactly how worn your shoes are without needing to...uh...look at them"

    There's a lot more to wear than how worn the outside tread looks, such as compression of the materials in the sole which change the shape and therefore the support a shoe gives. Have you never been told by a personal trainer never to do any weight training in your running shoes? Guess why that is ...

  23. Dale 3

    @Steve Taylor 3

    Seriously, a shoe Twitter feed isn't a bad idea. If current Twitter usage is anything to go by, soon we will all be following our friends': "My left foot has just hit the pavement... my right foot has just hit the pavement... my left foot..."

  24. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    The headset sounds idiotic

    Patenting a media player built into a wireless headset makes about as much sense as patenting a media player built into a small rectangular unit.

  25. Sarah Bee (Written by Reg staff)

    Re: iRan

    But how many ran?

  26. Thomas 18


    How about taking the money you would spend on sensors and tech for your shoe and instead spend it on quality materials and good workmanship. Oh wait, because then people wouldn't need to buy as many. Anyone remember when DMs lasted forever instead of a year?

  27. TeeCee Gold badge


    Looks like the recession is even more serious than the most pessimistic pundits are saying. We must have reached the Shoe Event Horizon if Apple are moving into shoes.

    Mine's the one with the bottle of "ACME Wing Growth Vitamins" in the pocket.

  28. Richard 102


    I can think of one legitimate use for this. My father has foot/ankle/back problems from an old injury and has been told by several non-quack doctors that there isn't much they can do about it. If his heels are getting worn, he unconsciously adjusts his gait to compensate for the small aches and pains, which lead to the back problems. A sensor could tell him "hey, time for new shoes" and save him a lot of pain (and my mom a good bit of stress).

  29. Hayden Clark Silver badge


    ... and enjoy your shoes!

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