That’s right, if Apple manages to install this new tech at ever music festival or concert, people will be unable to take photos or videos with their iPhones. By using infrared signals loaded with data, your phone camera can either be completely blocked or will be forced to add a watermark in all the footage.

Here is the exact nature of this tech from the patent filing :

“In some embodiments, a device may apply a watermark to detected images as an alternative to completely disabling a recording function. For example, a device may receive infrared signals with encoded data that includes a command to apply a watermark to detected images. In such an example, the device may then apply the watermark to all detected images that are displayed or stored (e.g., single pictures or frames of a video).”


This could mean a drastic drop in pirated sets but also a huge infringement on people’s freedom to use their devices as they wish. While many, especially artists, consider using phones during performances as rude and inappropriate, it is also people’s right to have a record of their experience. These infrared emitters can also be used in other interesting ways, maybe even good, such as to interact with your phone and display information and other details about an object or space to enhance an experience. For now, this patent seems to apply only to iPhones so Android devices seem safe.

Let’s hope this is never actually implemented. What do you think? Let us know!