The camera on smart phones, including Apple’s iPhone, have given everyone the ability to take stunning photographs whenever that magic moment catches their eye. The newest iPhone (at the time of the writing) boasts a camera that takes 12 megapixel pictures, 4k video complete with 1080p HD video recording, slo-motion capabilities, time-lapse video and much more. They even have a series of commercials and videos, focusing on the iPhone's camera.

However, you soon may not be able to use your camera to capture your favorite moments.

Apple has been granted a patent which could temporarily disable iPhone cameras at events. They first applied for the patent in 2011 and it was recently graded by the United States Patent and Trademark Office. The patent paperwork describes how it could work.

An infrared emitter can be located in areas where picture or video capture is prohibited, and the emitter can generate infrared signals with encoded data that includes commands to disable the recording functions of devices. An electronic device can then receive the infrared signals, decode the data and temporarily disable the device’s recording function based on the command.

Bands and artists have been vocal recently about fans using their phones to take pictures or record the shows. Some artists, such as Alicia Keys, has gone a step further and implemented services such as Yondr to prevent fans from using their phones at events.

There are situations in which the technology described in the patent could prove valuable, such as to preventing illegal recording in a movie theater or prevent patrons from taking pictures in museums, where it is prohibited.