As Adele made clear during her on-stage rant the other night, people filming concerts on their phones instead of enjoying the show in the moment is one of the more annoying things about the smartphone generation.
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Well audiences may soon have to put their phones away at live concerts because Apple have just patented a technology that will block the iPhone’s camera feature when they see fit.
The new software, which they haven’t formally introduced yet, would allow venues to use an infrared beam to disable a mobile phone’s camera, preventing users from taking both videos and photos.
This comes after a number of musicians complained about the use of mobiles and selfie sticks at live performances, which allows fans to quickly share content on social media and broadcast the images to the rest of the world.
Actor Benedict Cumberbatch also had a moan about this recently when performing Hamlet on stage. He told the crowd:
It’s mortifying and there is nothing less supportive or enjoyable as an actor on stage experiencing that.
According to Apple’s patent, when the software is switched on the user’s phone will display a “recording disabled” message if you try to take photos or video. Alternatively, a watermark or blur effect may be applied.
There’s always the argument that if you’ve paid to attend a concert or any kind of stage performance, then you should be allowed to film and take as many pictures as you want. It shouldn’t really matter how the millionaire performer on stage feels about it.
At the same time though, even for the rest of us it’s pretty annoying having to see all this grainy, shitty footage of someone at a Rihanna concert, where you can’t even really see or hear what’s going on. Just flashing lights and screaming voices everywhere. So maybe it is a good idea for Apple to implement this if it means we don’t have to put up with that anymore.
Then again without smartphones, we’d never have got to see someone bounce a beer can off Ja Rule’s head at his last concert. Don’t take that away from us Apple, please?