Apple patent reveals Apple Watch with camera

Screenshot 2022 05 31
Screenshot 2022 05 31 (Image credit: USPTO)

What you need to know

  • Apple has patented an Apple Watch with a camera.
  • It suggests the company is adding one to a future Apple Watch.
  • The patent features a camera housed in the body of the watch or even the digital crown.

A new Apple patent published today reveals the company is considering ways to put a camera in the Apple Watch.

The patent is titled Watch having a camera and reveals pretty much just that, the abstract states:

A watch having a camera is disclosed. The watch can include a housing having a front side, a back side, and an attachment interface configured to couple to a watch band. A camera can be mounted to the housing and configured to capture a picture of a scene through the back side of the housing. A display can be visible through the front side of the housing and configured to display the picture.

The description says that in some cases, this patent could pertain to a camera housed inside the digital crown of the Apple Watch, which has been a staple of its Best Apple Watches since they were first introduced:

The following disclosure relates to a watch having a camera. According to some embodiments, a watch can include a rotatable dial, such as a rotatable crown used for digital inputs. A camera can be included in the assembly to allow for images to be captured through an aperture extending through the dial. A lens can be integrated within the aperture and/or behind the aperture of the dial to focus an image of a scene. An image sensor disposed behind the aperture can further be configured to detect the movement of a marking on the dial to allow the image sensor to function both as a camera for capturing pictures of a scene, and as a sensor that detects rotation of the dial for sensing rotational inputs. Accordingly, a camera can be integrated in a relatively compact watch housing package, and the multi-purposed functionality of the camera image sensor can avoid a need for a separate sensing component on the dial.

Other options include a housing within the watch itself that could have a quick-release function so it can be easily removed for taking photos to stop your wrist from blocking the picture. Currently devices like the Apple Watch Series 7 only support Camera Remote for use as a timer and viewfinder when taking photos on your iPhone, this patent reveals that one day your Watch might be capable of taking photos all by itself.

There's always Amazon

Stephen Warwick
News Editor

Stephen Warwick has written about Apple for five years at iMore and previously elsewhere. He covers all of iMore's latest breaking news regarding all of Apple's products and services, both hardware and software. Stephen has interviewed industry experts in a range of fields including finance, litigation, security, and more. He also specializes in curating and reviewing audio hardware and has experience beyond journalism in sound engineering, production, and design. Before becoming a writer Stephen studied Ancient History at University and also worked at Apple for more than two years. Stephen is also a host on the iMore show, a weekly podcast recorded live that discusses the latest in breaking Apple news, as well as featuring fun trivia about all things Apple. Follow him on Twitter @stephenwarwick9