In other words, if your phone somehow falls into a place where you can no longer find it, that’s absolutely no problem because the Apple Car might be equipped with a dedicated system to tell you exactly where the device is currently located.
Apple proposes multiple ways to get such a feature up and running, but the easiest to implement appears to be based on a series of sensors installed inside the cabin (and likely used for other purposes too) that would work in conjunction with Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, and other signal generators fitted on the iPhone.
Therefore, the sensors would receive the signal sent by these systems and then calculate the distance, thus determining the position of the mobile device in the cabin based on a pre-defined vehicle map and using signal strength.
Needless to say, Apple could further polish the technology to be more reliable in the long term, but at this point, it’s pretty clear there are multiple scenarios where such a feature could come in handy.
For example, if Apple’s car is used to transport passengers for the likes of Uber or Lyft, the system can make sure customers don’t lose their phones inside the vehicle when they reach their destinations. The feature could therefore issue an audio alert if the iPhone is located in a place that’s hard to reach.
At the end of the day, this new idea seems pretty neat and should actually make its way to more cars, as it sounds like something that could come in handy to everybody. On the other hand, given it’s a patent, you’d better not hold your breath for it, as it takes time for a piece of technology to make its way from prototype to mass production.