Bureau of patents and trademarks United States has included in its roster of new Apple – smartphone devoid of mechanical buttons. In addition to the rejection of traditional keys, the engineers of the Corporation are going to use some more advanced developments.
As you know, the iPhone 7 mechanical Home key has replaced the touch with analogue feedback Taptic Engine. It is highly likely that in one of the following modifications of the device, the company will completely abandon the mechanical buttons on the body.
In the patent application Apple describes the technology of production deformable tactile material based on quantum tunneling to create a “smart” seat covers and other accessories for iPhone. With its help, the company plans to develop cases touch areas, which will eliminate the need for mechanical keys.
Apple engineers propose to add the entire area of the case several sensory areas, which are used to turn on and off, adjust volume and other tasks. The touch pad can be inside around the perimeter of the accessory.
To manage the functions of the iPhone, due to the quantum tunneling material, will be using taps on a certain area of the case. Case determines changes in electrical properties and sends control commands directly to the smartphone.
It should be noted that this is not the first patent that shows Apple’s intention to abandon the mechanical keys on the iPhone. The company has previously registered a patent for a smartphone with touch keys on the side faces.
The side of iPhone developers plan to move the virtual button of the volume key, the unlock function, keys to control the playback and more. For example, in applications such as the calculator, on the side face can move buttons that provide additional functionality.
This approach would allow Apple to make the interface of mobile applications more flexible and will relieve the manufacturer from the need to embed physical buttons in future gadgets.