The term “fat finger error” is usually thrown around in the financial markets, but it can also describe a tech user’s general clumsiness, and nothing is more clumsy than dropping that $750 Apple Inc. (NADSAQ:AAPL) iPhone 5 two weeks after purchase…especially if you chose to forgo standard cell phone insurance (we’re speaking from personal experience).
With that being said, a new patent filed by Apple–uncovered today–may fix these issues, while giving future iPhones the ability to take one step closer to becoming self-aware à la Skynet. We’ll let Ahhnold explain:
Now that you understand that, understand this: Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL)’s new patent application title 20130073095 reads as follows (emphasis added):
 Mobile electronic devices are being used more often and more people are carrying mobile electronic devices with them on a continuous basis. However, people may drop their mobile electronic devices, or the mobile electronic devices may otherwise may be caused to enter a freefall state. For example, if the mobile electronic device may get pushed off of a counter or table. As mobile electronic devices impact a surface after freefall they may be substantially damaged, even if they are encased within a cover or other protective device.
 Examples of the disclosure may take the form of an electronic device. The electronic device may include a processor, a sensor in communication with the processor, and a protective mechanism in communication with the processor. The protective mechanism is configured to selectively alter a center of mass of the electronic device.
 Other examples of the disclosure may take the form of a method for protecting a vulnerable area of an electronic device during a freefall. The method may include detecting a freefall of the device by a sensor. Then, determining via at least one sensor an orientation of the device. After the orientation of the device has been determined, estimating an impact area of the device. Then, selectively changing the orientation of the device via a protective mechanism, depending on the estimated impact area of the device.
Yep, that’s Skynet sh*#.
Now, Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) patents that seem a bit out there aren’t anything new. Remember this patent we talked about last year, concerning Google Inc (NASDAQ:GOOG)-style Augmented Reality glasses?
This 2011 patent also seems eerily similar to a potential Apple “iWatch,” or at least a very expensive slap bracelet.
In fact, it’s not out of the realm of possibility that the iPhone 7–hopefully Cupertino can get a bit more creative with the model name by then–will be a flexible, mass-adjusting device that’s impervious to clumsy users. We’re not really sure where augmented reality glasses fit into this picture, but Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) would be smart to separate these functions into multiple devices, which makes the most inherent sense.