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A recent patent shows the Apple Watch with Touch ID on the digital crown

A recent patent granted by the United States Patent and Trademark Office shows Cupertino’s firm intentions to renew the digital crown of his Apple Watch by equipping it with a Touch ID sensor. The document raises the possibility that the user can unlock the smartwatch by placing his fingerprint on the digital crown .

The patent states that the electronic device includes a case which defines a side surface of the watch , a transparent cover attached to the case, which defines a front surface of the electronic watch, an image sensor element and a crown located next to the case.

A recent patent shows the Apple Watch with Touch ID on the digital crown
A recent patent shows the Apple Watch with Touch ID on the digital crown

Specifically, the crown could include a sensor to detect when an object comes in contact with its surface, such as a finger. This means that such a digital crown would be an ideal tool for easily unlocking the watch .

Currently, there are two ways to unlock an Apple Watch. The first is by entering a PIN on the touch screen , and the second is by unlocking the iPhone, which also unlocks the paired clock. An Apple Watch with Touch ID would be more convenient than either, but would change a bit the way users interact with this element of the device.

This could also give us clues about Apple’s supposed intentions to return the Touch ID on future iPhones without notches, either with a sensor embedded under the screen or in the power button.

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This is the second patent this year that relates to a new functionality of the digital crown. Last January, we learned of one that raised the possibility that the Apple Watch can have a digital joystick-type crown. Although these are two quite interesting patents, this does not guarantee that such a feature or technology will exist in the future, so although it would be interesting to see this advance, we still do not know if it will ever become a reality.