THIS WEEK'S SPONSOR:

Backblaze

Astonishingly Easy And Unlimited Cloud Backup


Apple Patents LCD Screen That Plays Nice with Sunglasses

A new patent application surfaced at the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office entitled “Display that Emits Circularly-Polarized Light” and discovered by AppleInsider today points at a new kind of LCD screens capable of playing nice in outdoor viewing when an iPhone or iPad user is wearing sunglasses to protect himself from harmful UV rays. The problem with polarized sunglasses – not necessarily LCD screens exposed to directly sunlight, something Apple’s own displays have long been criticized due to poor performances when compared to the Amazon Kindle – is that they “only allow through light with an electric field that vibrates in the vertical direction”, and considering current LCD displays have an electric field that vibrates in one direction, the user wearing polarized sunglasses may see distorted images when looking at the screen from certain angles. Polarized sunglasses and LCDs don’t play nice together, and Apple’s proposed solution is aimed at building an LCD display that, with circularly polarized light, allows sunglasses to not see black areas, distorted images, and so forth.

The layer receives the linearly-polarized light on one surface, converts the linearly-polarized light to circularly-polarized light, and then emits the circularly-polarized light from another surface,” the application reads. “By emitting circularly-polarized light, the display reduces the perceived distortion found at some angles when the display is viewed through a linearly-polarizing filter.

The patent design seems to suggest Apple might get around the problem of iOS devices used outdoors assuming people generally tend to wear sunglasses in direct sunlight. The patent credits John Z. Zhong, Wei Chen, Cheng Chen, Victor H.E. Yin, and Shawn R. Gettemy as inventors.

Unlock More with Club MacStories

Founded in 2015, Club MacStories has delivered exclusive content every week for over six years.

In that time, members have enjoyed nearly 400 weekly and monthly newsletters packed with more of your favorite MacStories writing as well as Club-only podcasts, eBooks, discounts on apps, icons, and services. Join today, and you’ll get everything new that we publish every week, plus access to our entire archive of back issues and downloadable perks.

The Club expanded in 2021 with Club MacStories+ and Club Premier. Club MacStories+ members enjoy even more exclusive stories, a vibrant Discord community, a rotating roster of app discounts, and more. And, with Club Premier, you get everything we offer at every Club level plus an extended, ad-free version of our podcast AppStories that is delivered early each week in high-bitrate audio.

Choose the Club plan that’s right for you:

  • Club MacStories: Weekly and monthly newsletters via email and the web that are brimming with app collections, tips, automation workflows, longform writing, a Club-only podcast, periodic giveaways, and more;
  • Club MacStories+: Everything that Club MacStories offers, plus exclusive content like Federico’s Automation Academy and John’s Macintosh Desktop Experience, a powerful web app for searching and exploring over 6 years of content and creating custom RSS feeds of Club content, an active Discord community, and a rotating collection of discounts, and more;
  • Club Premier: Everything in from our other plans and AppStories+, an extended version of our flagship podcast that’s delivered early, ad-free, and in high-bitrate audio.