Your iPhone could be getting some serious new capabilities soon, following the news that Apple has acquired the 3D-sensing technology company PrimeSense. This is the same Israeli company that built the original Microsoft Kinect sensor. But that doesn't mean Apple's planning an Xbox competitor anytime soon.
What the acquisition does suggest is that Apple's finally getting serious about 3D. The Cupertino company has been filing patents for 3D-related technology for years now—and you wouldn't really know it based on the devices it's releasing. But there are some pretty exciting parallels between Apple's past patent filings and PrimeSense technology. Take Apple's patent for a hands-free 3D display from 2009, or its crazy, projected 3D display, for instance. Of course, it's always important to remember that companies often file patents defensively, and Apple probably has twice as many secret 3D projects as it has 3D patents.