It seems Microsoft is set to solve one of my minor Windows Phone annoyances. We tend to scan QR codes a lot to download apps, and Windows Phone of course has that feature built-in. However to access the feature one has to first press the Search button and then the Vision button. It always seemed to me that the Search app should be able to scan QR Codes without any further intervention.
Microsoft has now applied for a patent that uses the intuitive gestures we use to access various input methods to automatically activate these functions. In the search app, tilting the phone up steeply will activate the camera for scanning QR Codes, tilting it steeply down, so the bottom with the microphone would be higher than the top, would activate voice search (the image above), while keeping it roughly level would presumably keep the phone in text search mode.
As mentioned earlier, the gestures appear to be pretty intuitive, and I hope the patent, which was applied for in 2011, will become more than a research project and actually end up on our handsets.
See more illustrations and detail at Patent Bolt here.