Jump to Main ContentJump to Primary Navigation

Ever get annoyed by countless screens at gigs? Apple's new patent could stop people filming on their phones


Bad news for anyone in the habit of filming gigs or live performances with their phone – Apple has just patented new technology which could deactivate iPhone cameras at concerts, films and other live events.

Holding your phone in the air to record a live event is a relatively recent phenomenon, but one which has quickly become commonplace at festivals and gigs. However, it's a habit that's often seen as antisocial – especially by fellow concert goers who end up struggling to see the stage through a sea of glowing screens held aloft.

According to the patent application, the company has now developed technology which would allow venues to use an infrared beam to disable photography on mobile phones, preventing people from taking photos or filming any video.

Apple patent

The new technology might seem slightly creepy – it's odd to think that a venue could essentially control your phone, whether you're filming or simply wanting to snap a picture with your friends – but its implementation could also force fans to live in the moment instead of absorbing a performance through a screen.

Last year, Hamlet star Benedict Cumberbatch made an impassioned plea urging fans to stop filming his West End performances on their phones and enjoy the live performance as it happened instead.

The illustrations submitted along with the patent show an iPhone in front of a band on stage, with the words 'recording disabled' on the screen, but it's likely that the technology will be used to tackle the illegal recording of theatre performances and cinema screenings, too; in a dark theatre, the use of brightly lit screens is distracting and frustrating for both audience members and performers.




Cumberbatch is right: stop filming and be present in the moment


So apparently there WON’T be a Spice Girls reunion this year after all

spice girls.jpg

The era of the Spice Girls: when feminism went pop

glasto 4.jpg

Don't slam the women-only zone at Glastonbury: it's a good thing


The evolution of giving: how social media revolutionised giving back


Adele debuts new music video – and she’s dancing in it

iphone happiness.jpg

Digital detox be gone: how your iPhone could make you happy


Caitlin Moran & Benedict Cumberbatch release refugee charity single


Why binge-watching TV online is ruining your sex life



“How Linkin Park’s Chester Bennington gave my generation a voice"

The musician leaves a lasting legacy

by Sarah Biddlecombe
21 Jul 2017

The grossly sexist ads we can’t believe exist in the 21st century

From a Co-op egg to that deeply offensive Protein World poster

by Kayleigh Dray
21 Jul 2017

How your Love Island obsession is wreaking havoc with your health

Experts have genuinely issued a warning…

by Kayleigh Dray
21 Jul 2017

Boots won’t cut morning-after pill price because we can’t be trusted

Cheaper emergency contraception? Unprotected sex party at ours, everyone!

by Amy Swales
21 Jul 2017

Did Japan’s First Lady pretend not to speak English to ignore Trump?

Akie Abe, we salute you.

by Sarah Biddlecombe
21 Jul 2017

This 'Beer For Her' has managed to offend everyone on Twitter

Apparently womankind can only ever drink from pink receptacles

by Megan Murray
21 Jul 2017

This Instagram account is aiming to break the miscarriage taboo

Women are coming together to share their stories of loss

by Megan Murray
21 Jul 2017

Jodie Whittaker’s Doctor Who salary revealed after gender pay gap row

And it may surprise you…

by Kayleigh Dray
21 Jul 2017

Quiz: which famous duo are you and your work wife?

It’s time to find out, once and for all, who you and your work wife really are…

by Kayleigh Dray
20 Jul 2017

You’ve been making your tea wrong this whole time, reveal tea experts

Wait, what?

by Jasmine Andersson
20 Jul 2017