BlackBerry wins patent for unlocking your phone with a wearable device

It’s no secret that BlackBerry is strongest in enterprise, but the company is still trying to make its mark with its hardware, too. It just released the Passport last month and shortly after spoke of determination to build one ‘unconventional’ phone per year going forward.

What’s more, it’s also considering entering the wearable space. In early September, BlackBerry’s president of global enterprise services said the company was experimenting internally with wearables and it looks like the company has hit on something it feels is worth protecting.

Bloomberg reports BlackBerry has been issued no fewer than 27 new patents by the USPTO and among them is one for a wearable device that would pair with a mobile device to eliminate the need for an unlock code.

This is similar to the functionality offered by multiple Android Wear apps, however, the patent filing describes a standalone device with a physical clip that must be closed in order for the wearable to be able to bypass your lock code. This implementation would go some way toward eliminating concerns about your watch unlocking your phone even if you’re not wearing the watch (say if the wearable is charging nearby), but wouldn’t eliminate the issue of your watch unlocking your phone when your phone is nearby but not on your person (sitting on your desk during a meeting, for example, or charging at a shared outlet).

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Of course, a patent is not confirmation of plans to develop a product. Especially when it comes to wearables. Apple, for example, has filed multiple patents relating to wearable devices and wearable technology (including one that describes a slap bracelet like device that can be worn on your wrist or your ankle) and not all of it is present in the Apple Watch that is set to launch next year.

[source]USPTO, Bloomberg[/source]