Apple has reportedly been granted a patent for a new technology that automatically censors streamed content. The tech giant's patent is supposedly titled, “Management, Replacement and Removal of Explicit Lyrics during Audio Playback.” The company applied for the patent back in 2014 stating that a song with unwanted language—”explicit, profane, or otherwise inappropriate language”—would need to be replaced by a clean version or online services would block access to the entire song. However, Apple can now identify unwanted language thanks to this new technology called metadata. Metadata enables the company to find the location of undesirable audio and replace it with alternate audio, a beep, or silence. No current Apple devices use this technology, but the patent does make it a possibility that this technology will be used in the company's future products.
This new technology could have a huge impact on their Beats 1 radio show that only plays non-explicit versions of songs, according to Business Insider. The patent is specifically geared towards streaming audio on Apple Music, but the patent isn't limited to just music. In fact, it also mentions audio books, which means that unwanted language could be omitted from these as well. However, only time will tell exactly how the company utilizes this new patent, if they implement it at all.