Apple is doing everything they can to avoid severing ties with the music industry. As we've learned in the past, the RIAA desperately grabs for anything that they can to shut down distribution of their music. That includes a 30-second concert video, if their snoops happen to find it. Anyone who's received a DMCA takedown knows that all too well. We're sure they wouldn't be opposed to this.
The Cupertino-based iPhone maker has filed a patent application for a method that would disable unauthorized recording of concerts based on a coded infrared signal as described below:
Systems and methods for receiving infrared data with a camera designed to detect images based on visible light are provided. A system can include a camera and image processing circuitry electrically coupled to the camera. The image processing circuitry can determine whether each image detected by the camera includes an infrared signal with encoded data. If the image processing circuitry determines that an image includes an infrared signal with encoded data, the circuitry may route at least a portion of the image (e.g., the infrared signal) to circuitry operative to decode the encoded data. If the image processing circuitry determines that an image does not include an infrared signal with encoded data, the circuitry may route the image to a display or storage. Images routed to the display or storage can then be used as individual pictures or frames in a video because those images do not include any effects of infrared light communications.
The application was discovered by website 9to5Mac, and we can see it being not only limited to live concerts but movies as well. What's also interesting, however, is that the infrared signal could even direct the user to a the iTunes Store so that they may listen to the song or watch the video there.