updated 04:10 pm EDT, Thu July 3, 2008
Apple multi-touch patents
The US Patent and Trademark Office today published approximately 34 applications from Apple, all of which relate to multi-touch technology. Among these are a means of covering necessary hardware from view, to make devices more visually appealing; a means of distinguishing whether a screen is being touched by flesh or other forms of input, such as a fingernail; and in particular, a unique Apple design for a capacitive touch sensor.
The remainder of patents typically refer to refinements and other necessary supporting technologies, but one of these, "Simultaneous Sensing Arrangement," contains a figure which suggests that Apple expects multi-touch on a range of devices, beyond just phones, iPods and notebooks. These may include UMPCs and full-sized desktops.