As we become a society that depends more and more on using smartphones, their use is also becoming restricted in a number of situations, such as driving a car or sitting in a movie theater. Now Microsoft has filed a new patent that is designed to silence such a device automatically in certain instances.
The company filed for the patent to the United States Trademark and Patent Office in August but it only became visible to the public in the past few days. The application offers of a summary of how it would work:
A device quiet service is implemented to initiate a device quiet control that quiets one or more of the other associated devices that are controllable by the mobile device, and the device quiet service initiates communication of the device quiet control to the associated devices. A device quiet control can be initiated to restrict communication functions of the other associated devices, such as for a designated time duration.
The application adds that such a service could be used to mute a mobile device at a specific location, such as a school or movie theater or during an event like a business meeting. Some movie theaters already have technology designed to block WiFi and cellular traffic.
While filing for a patent does not mean that Microsoft is actively working on such a feature, we would not be surprised to see a version of it included in a future version of Windows Phone.