Apple patents Star Trek-style Communicator Badge

A new Apple patent gives us a glimpse of what a future Apple-branded communication device could be.

Communicator Badge, Apple Patent, Star Trek

The “Wearable Device with Directional Audio” is very reminiscent of an accessory that Star Trek fans know very well: the Communicator Badge.

In practice, this future Apple device would be able to provide audio output even if it is located some distance from the user’s ears. For example, the device can be worn on a person’s shirt and direct the audio waves directly to the ear.

This description offered by Apple in its patent is reminiscent of the communication device that became famous in Star Trek. Among other things, from the designs of the patent, it almost seems that the company was inspired by the saga.

communicator badge star trek 2

The only difference is that in the design the device is worn on the user’s neck, rather than as a badge. However, Apple specifies that the user can also wear it in other positions of the shirt or other similar clothing.

With this solution, Apple aims to ditch traditional headphones and earphones, as they can be “a little intrusive to wear and inhibit the user’s ability to listen to ambient sounds or interact with nearby people at the same time”.

The device would also mount sensors to detect different parameters, such as images, pressure, light, touch, force, temperature, position, motion, etc. For example, Apple explains that the sensor can be used to monitor biometric characteristics, “such as health and physical activity parameters, heart rate, electrocardiographic (ECG) characteristics, galvanic skin resistance and other electrical properties of the user’s body”.

Obviously it’s only a patent, but Apple already seems projected towards the future.

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