Patents by Inventor Martin P. Grunthaner

Martin P. Grunthaner has filed for patents to protect the following inventions. This listing includes patent applications that are pending as well as patents that have already been granted by the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO).

  • Patent number: 11275475
    Abstract: A compliant material, such as a conductive foam, is positioned in the dielectric or capacitive gap between drive and sense electrodes and/or other conductive elements of a capacitive and/or other force sensor, such as a TFT or other display element and a sensor assembly. The compliant material prevents damage by preventing and/or cushioning contact. The compliant material may be conductive. By being conductive and being positioned between the electrodes while still being separated from one or more of the electrodes, the compliant material also shortens the effective electrical distance between the electrodes. As a result, the force sensor may be more sensitive than would otherwise be possible while being less vulnerable to damage.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 5, 2021
    Date of Patent: March 15, 2022
    Assignee: Apple Inc.
    Inventors: Daniel J. Bechstein, Collin R. Petty, Martin P. Grunthaner, Andrew W. Joyce, John R. Matthews, Pavan O. Gupta, Albert Lin
  • Publication number: 20210124460
    Abstract: A compliant material, such as a conductive foam, is positioned in the dielectric or capacitive gap between drive and sense electrodes and/or other conductive elements of a capacitive and/or other force sensor, such as a TFT or other display element and a sensor assembly. The compliant material prevents damage by preventing and/or cushioning contact. The compliant material may be conductive. By being conductive and being positioned between the electrodes while still being separated from one or more of the electrodes, the compliant material also shortens the effective electrical distance between the electrodes. As a result, the force sensor may be more sensitive than would otherwise be possible while being less vulnerable to damage.
    Type: Application
    Filed: January 5, 2021
    Publication date: April 29, 2021
    Inventors: Daniel J. Bechstein, Collin R. Petty, Martin P. Grunthaner, Andrew W. Joyce, John R. Matthews, Pavan O. Gupta, Albert Lin
  • Patent number: 10921943
    Abstract: A compliant material, such as a conductive foam, is positioned in the dielectric or capacitive gap between drive and sense electrodes and/or other conductive elements of a capacitive and/or other force sensor, such as a TFT or other display element and a sensor assembly. The compliant material prevents damage by preventing and/or cushioning contact. The compliant material may be conductive. By being conductive and being positioned between the electrodes while still being separated from one or more of the electrodes, the compliant material also shortens the effective electrical distance between the electrodes. As a result, the force sensor may be more sensitive than would otherwise be possible while being less vulnerable to damage.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 30, 2019
    Date of Patent: February 16, 2021
    Assignee: Apple Inc.
    Inventors: Daniel J. Bechstein, Collin R. Petty, Martin P. Grunthaner, Andrew W. Joyce, John R. Matthews, Pavan O. Gupta, Albert Lin
  • Publication number: 20200348795
    Abstract: A compliant material, such as a conductive foam, is positioned in the dielectric or capacitive gap between drive and sense electrodes and/or other conductive elements of a capacitive and/or other force sensor, such as a TFT or other display element and a sensor assembly. The compliant material prevents damage by preventing and/or cushioning contact. The compliant material may be conductive. By being conductive and being positioned between the electrodes while still being separated from one or more of the electrodes, the compliant material also shortens the effective electrical distance between the electrodes. As a result, the force sensor may be more sensitive than would otherwise be possible while being less vulnerable to damage.
    Type: Application
    Filed: April 30, 2019
    Publication date: November 5, 2020
    Inventors: Daniel J. Bechstein, Collin R. Petty, Martin P. Grunthaner, Andrew W. Joyce, John R. Matthews, Pavan O. Gupta, Albert Lin
  • Patent number: 10817096
    Abstract: A force-sensitive device for electronic device. The force inputs may be detected by measuring changes in capacitance, as measured by surface flex of a device having a flexible touchable surface, causing flex at a compressible gap within the device. A capacitive sensor responsive to changes in distance across the compressible gap. The sensor can be positioned above or below, or within, a display element, and above or below, or within, a backlight unit. The device can respond to bending, twisting, or other deformation, to adjust those zero force measurements. The device can use measure of surface flux that appear at positions on the surface not directly the subject of applied force, such as when the user presses on a part of the frame or a surface without capacitive sensors.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 6, 2015
    Date of Patent: October 27, 2020
    Assignee: Apple Inc.
    Inventors: Charley T. Ogata, Martin P. Grunthaner, Michael B. Wittenberg, Peter W. Richards, Romain A. Teil, Steven P. Hotelling
  • Patent number: 10739899
    Abstract: A device configured to sense a touch on a surface of the device. The device includes a cover and a force-sensing structure disposed below the cover. The force-sensing structure may be positioned below a display and used in combination with other force-sensing elements to estimate the force of a touch on the cover of a device.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 12, 2019
    Date of Patent: August 11, 2020
    Assignee: Apple Inc.
    Inventors: Sinan Filiz, Martin P. Grunthaner, John Stephen Smith, Charley T. Ogata, Christian M. Sauer, Shin John Choi, Christopher J. Butler, Steven J. Martisauskas
  • Patent number: 10739855
    Abstract: An input device can be integrated within an electronic device and/or operably connected to an electronic device through a wired or wireless connection. The input device can include one or more force sensors positioned below a cover element of the input device or an input surface of the electronic device. The input device can include other components and/or functionality, such as a biometric sensor and/or a switch element.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 25, 2018
    Date of Patent: August 11, 2020
    Assignee: Apple Inc.
    Inventors: Sora Kim, Martin P. Grunthaner, Rui Jin, Michael B. Wittenberg, Michael K. McCord, Henric Larsson, Giovanni Gozzini, Lucy Browning, Scott A. Myers
  • Patent number: 10635217
    Abstract: An electronic device that senses home button inputs through ultrasonic force sensing. The electronic device may correlate that amount of force that a user applies to the home button with a specific home button command. In certain embodiments, the system may combine the force of touch information with other information that is sensed for a particular touch to correlate the touch input with a greater number of home button commands. A home button embodiment discussed herein may include a home button image that is displayed on a touch sensitive panel. In other embodiments, a home button may be located outside of the boundaries of a touch sensitive panel.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 2, 2018
    Date of Patent: April 28, 2020
    Assignee: Apple Inc.
    Inventors: Brian Q. Huppi, Martin P. Grunthaner, John G. Elias, Sinan Filiz, Steven P. Hotelling
  • Publication number: 20190369779
    Abstract: A device configured to determine the location and magnitude of a touch on a surface of the device. The device includes a transparent touch sensor that is configured to detect a location of a touch on the transparent touch sensor. The device also includes a force-sensing structure disposed at the periphery of the transparent touch sensor. The force sensor includes an upper capacitive plate and a compressible element disposed on one side of the upper capacitive plate. The force sensor also includes a lower capacitive plate disposed on a side of the compressible element that is opposite the upper capacitive plate.
    Type: Application
    Filed: August 19, 2019
    Publication date: December 5, 2019
    Inventors: Jonah A. Harley, Peter W. Richards, Brian Q. Huppi, Omar Sze Leung, Dhaval N. Shah, Martin P. Grunthaner, Steven P. Hotelling, Miguel C. Christophy, Vivek Katiyar, Tang Yew Tan, Christopher J. Butler, Erik G. De Jong, Ming Sartee, Rui Qiao, Steven J. Martisauskas, Storrs T. Hoen, Richard Hung Minh Dinh, Lee E. Hooton, Ian A. Spraggs, Sawyer I. Cohen, David A. Pakula
  • Publication number: 20190361560
    Abstract: A device configured to sense a touch on a surface of the device. The device includes a cover and a force-sensing structure disposed below the cover. The force-sensing structure may be positioned below a display and used in combination with other force-sensing elements to estimate the force of a touch on the cover of a device.
    Type: Application
    Filed: August 12, 2019
    Publication date: November 28, 2019
    Inventors: Sinan Filiz, Martin P. Grunthaner, John Stephen Smith, Charley T. Ogata, Christian M. Sauer, Shin John Choi, Christopher J. Butler, Steven J. Martisauskas
  • Patent number: 10466829
    Abstract: An optical force sensor that may compensate for environmental effects, including, for example, variations in temperature of the device or the surroundings. In some examples, two force-sensitive layers are separated by a compliant layer. The relative electrical response of the two force-sensitive layers may be used to compute an estimate of the force of a touch that reduces the effect of variations in temperature. In some examples, piezoelectric films having anisotropic strain properties are used to reduce the effects of temperature.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 26, 2017
    Date of Patent: November 5, 2019
    Assignee: Apple Inc.
    Inventors: Sinan Filiz, James E. Pedder, Charley T. Ogata, John Stephen Smith, Dhaval Chandrakant Patel, Shin John Choi, Brian Q. Huppi, Christopher J. Butler, Martin P. Grunthaner
  • Patent number: 10423265
    Abstract: An optical force sensor, which may be used as input to an electronic device. The optical force sensor may be configured to compensate for variations in temperature using two or more force-sensitive components that are formed from materials having different temperature- and strain-dependent responses.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 26, 2017
    Date of Patent: September 24, 2019
    Assignee: Apple Inc.
    Inventors: Sinan Filiz, James E. Pedder, Charley T. Ogata, John Stephen Smith, Dhaval Chandrakant Patel, Shin John Choi, Brian Q. Huppi, Christopher J. Butler, Martin P. Grunthaner
  • Patent number: 10386970
    Abstract: A device configured to determine the location and magnitude of a touch on a surface of the device. The device includes a transparent touch sensor that is configured to detect a location of a touch on the transparent touch sensor. The device also includes a force-sensing structure disposed at the periphery of the transparent touch sensor. The force sensor includes an upper capacitive plate and a compressible element disposed on one side of the upper capacitive plate. The force sensor also includes a lower capacitive plate disposed on a side of the compressible element that is opposite the upper capacitive plate.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 6, 2014
    Date of Patent: August 20, 2019
    Assignee: Apple Inc.
    Inventors: Jonah A. Harley, Peter W. Richards, Brian Q. Huppi, Omar Sze Leung, Dhaval N. Shah, Martin P. Grunthaner, Steven P. Hotelling, Miguel C Christophy, Vivek Katiyar, Tang Yew Tan, Christopher J. Butler, Erik G. de Jong, Ming Sartee, Rui Qiao, Steven J. Martisauskas, Storrs T. Hoen, Richard Hung Minh Dinh, Lee E. Hooton, Ian A. Spraggs, Sawyer I. Cohen, David A. Pakula
  • Patent number: 10379657
    Abstract: A device configured to sense a touch on a surface of the device. The device includes a cover and a force-sensing structure disposed below the cover. The force-sensing structure may be positioned below a display and used in combination with other force-sensing elements to estimate the force of a touch on the cover of a device.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 24, 2018
    Date of Patent: August 13, 2019
    Assignee: Apple Inc.
    Inventors: Sinan Filiz, Martin P. Grunthaner, John Stephen Smith, Charley T. Ogata, Christian M. Sauer, Shin John Choi, Christopher J. Butler, Steven J. Martisauskas
  • Patent number: 10379612
    Abstract: An electronic device may have a display and a gaze tracking system. Control circuitry in the electronic device can produce a saliency map in which items of visual interest are identified among content that has been displayed on a display in the electronic device. The saliency map may identify items such as selectable buttons, text, and other items of visual interest. User input such as mouse clicks, voice commands, and other commands may be used by the control circuitry in identifying when a user is gazing on particular items within the displayed content. Information on a user's actual on-screen point of gaze that is inferred using the saliency map information and user input can be compared to measured eye position information from the gaze tracking system to calibrate the gaze tracking system during normal operation of the electronic device.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 29, 2017
    Date of Patent: August 13, 2019
    Assignee: Apple Inc.
    Inventors: Nicolas P. Bonnier, William Riedel, Jiaying Wu, Martin P. Grunthaner, Seyed Hesameddin Najafi Shoushtari
  • Publication number: 20190042046
    Abstract: Systems for detecting an amount and/or location of a force applied to a device using a piezoelectric film are provided. One example system can include a transparent piezoelectric film for generating an electric charge in response to a deformation of the film. Electrodes positioned on opposite surfaces of the piezoelectric film can be used to detect the generated electric charge and determine an amount and/or location of force applied to the film based on the generated electric charge. In another embodiment, the system can include a capacitive touch sensor for determining a location of a touch event on the device.
    Type: Application
    Filed: September 28, 2018
    Publication date: February 7, 2019
    Inventors: Sinan Filiz, Brian Q. Huppi, Christopher J. Butler, Martin P. Grunthaner, Shahrooz Shahparnia, Sunggu Kang, Kai Wang
  • Patent number: 10198123
    Abstract: The disclosed embodiments relate to forming an area on a touchscreen which electrically isolates a portion of the viewable area of the touchscreen from a capacitive sensor associated with the touchscreen.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 21, 2014
    Date of Patent: February 5, 2019
    Assignee: Apple Inc.
    Inventors: Cheng Chen, Erik A. Uttermann, Kevin D. Gibbs, Manu Agarwal, Martin P. Grunthaner
  • Publication number: 20190025923
    Abstract: An input device can be integrated within an electronic device and/or operably connected to an electronic device through a wired or wireless connection. The input device can include one or more force sensors positioned below a cover element of the input device or an input surface of the electronic device. The input device can include other components and/or functionality, such as a biometric sensor and/or a switch element.
    Type: Application
    Filed: June 25, 2018
    Publication date: January 24, 2019
    Inventors: Sora Kim, Martin P. Grunthaner, Rui Jin, Michael B. Wittenberg, Michael K. McCord, Henric Larsson, Giovanni Gozzini, Lucy Browning, Scott A. Myers
  • Patent number: 10168814
    Abstract: A force sensing device for electronic device. The force inputs may be detected by measuring changes in capacitance, as measured by surface flex of a device having a flexible touchable surface, causing flex at a compressible gap within the device. A capacitive sensor responsive to changes in distance across the compressible gap. The sensor can be positioned above or below, or within, a display element, and above or below, or within, a backlight unit. The device can respond to bending, twisting, or other deformation, to adjust those zero force measurements. The device can use measure of surface flux that appear at positions on the surface not directly the subject of applied force, such as when the user presses on a part of the frame or a surface without capacitive sensors.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 15, 2013
    Date of Patent: January 1, 2019
    Assignee: Apple Inc.
    Inventors: Steven P. Hotelling, Martin P. Grunthaner, Peter W. Richards, Romain A. Teil, Charley T. Ogata, Michael B. Wittenberg
  • Patent number: 10162444
    Abstract: A force-sensitive device for electronic device. The force inputs may be detected by measuring changes in capacitance, as measured by surface flex of a device having a flexible touchable surface, causing flex at a compressible gap within the device. A capacitive sensor responsive to changes in distance across the compressible gap. The sensor can be positioned above or below, or within, a display element, and above or below, or within, a backlight unit. The device can respond to bending, twisting, or other deformation, to adjust those zero force measurements. The device can use measure of surface flux that appear at positions on the surface not directly the subject of applied force, such as when the user presses on a part of the frame or a surface without capacitive sensors.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 16, 2015
    Date of Patent: December 25, 2018
    Assignee: Apple Inc.
    Inventors: Charley T. Ogata, Martin P. Grunthaner, Michael B. Wittenberg, Peter W. Richards, Romain A. Teil, Steven P. Hotelling