Apple Supplier Hints at Solid State Buttons in Future iPhones: Report
Recent reports have revealed that the upcoming Apple iPhone 15 Pro may have a frame made of titanium with a rounded back. The material is more expensive than the stainless steel found in the latest and available ‘Pro’ models from the brand. Another note from analyst Ming-Chi Kuo also said that Apple will switch to solid-state buttons with the iPhone 15 Pro models and include three Taptic engines. It turns out that Apple’s component supplier may have just made the same comment, leading to a high possibility of hard buttons coming to the next iPhone.
As reported by MacRumourssupplier of Apple Cirrus Logic in a letter to shareholders confirmed that it will continue to “engage with the strategic customer” and that it plans to bring “a new HPMS component to the smartphone market next year.”
This part could be the company’s “mixed signal chips,” which MacRumours says includes the Taptic Engine haptic drivers in iPhone models. Another vague hint comes from Cirrus Logic CEO John Forsyth, who said latest earnings call he said such a part would hit the market “after half of next year”. Indeed, all of the above news from the Texas-based semiconductor company coincides well with the launch of the next iPhone, according to tradition, which happens every year in September.
Kuo in his previous report said that Apple will add two of these new Taptic engines to the inner left and right sides of the next generation iPhone models. This will provide a haptic feedback similar to that previously available when pressing the home button of the Apple iPhone 7, which also has a button that does not physically move, but gives the user the impression that it is being pressed using a Taptic engine and vibrations. Apple is expected to switch from its Lightning port to the more common Type-C port in the second half of 2023.
While the idea of a buttonless iPhone sounds exciting, Chinese smartphone manufacturer Vivo explored the same idea in 2019 with a concept device called the Vivo Apex. The smartphone had no buttons or ports and relied on a technology labeled ‘Touch Sense’, which was a combination of dynamic touch and pressure sensing to actuate things. A year later, Vivo followed up with the 2020 version of the Apex by adding a curved 3D display, which wrapped around the sides of the device and was accompanied by an invisible selfie camera that sat behind the screen.