The modern-day concert is a curious thing. People set their alarms to be the first to purchase covetable tickets, then congregate in front of the stage only to witness the performance through the lens of their cell phone. If you're frustrated that the iconic sea of swaying hands has been replaced by the glow of recording phones, take comfort in knowing that could be about to change.
Apple has patented technology to put an end to recording live music during a performance. According to Stereogum, the technology gives the tech giant the power to emit a signal that will disable the video function in any iPhones within a nearby radius.
"For example, an infrared emitter can be located in areas where picture or video capture is prohibited, and the emitter can generate infrared signals with encoded data that includes commands to disable the recording functions of devices," the patent reads. "An electronic device can then receive the infrared signals, decode the data and temporarily disable the device's recording function based on the command."
While this could come as good news for frustrated festival-goers or for performers who want to protect their intellectual property, there could be a sinister side to this new technology. Stereogum points out that the infrared signal could be used to disable cameras during police brutality or a corrupt exchange, to prevent evidence. While that's certainly a concern, the short-term consequences will likely be that friends who missed out on Kanye tickets will just have to wait until next time—and that you'll need to capture the shows you do attend on a good old-fashioned camera.
Would you be angered if Apple disabled your iPhone camera at a performance, or is it a great move to change concert culture?