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The current patent received approval from the U.S. PTO on Tuesday and could be the basis for a new social network, or at least a “friend service” run by Apple that could have features that users on other social networks might desire.
This wouldn’t be Apple’s first attempt at a social network, as some people may remember the day when Ping showed up in iTunes in 2010, and tried to create a music-focused social network, but largely failed to pull in users.
Considering the date of the original patent on the social network system, it’s possible that it was first envisioned for use in Ping, though that is most likely out of the question now…
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