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  • Future Devices Will Have Touch-Sensitive Cases


    In a new patent, Apple has revealed plans for new devices without any buttons at all: using technologies like capacitive sensing, resistive sensing, and surface acoustic wave sensing, the device's case would respond to touch and hand gestures. "The touch sensing devices may for example be selected from touch panels, touch screens or touch sensitive housings," according to the patent, entitled "Hand held electronic device with multiple touch sensing devices". You'd be able to control an iPhone with the same hand you hold it in, and secure it to your unique hand print.

    Slashgear took note of the patent, which was released yesterday. On larger devices like the iPad, gripping one side of the device would disable the sensors so that your free hand could operate the sensors on the other side of the case. On an iPhone or iPod touch, the entire back case would be touch-sensitive, so that you could use single-finger or chorded gestures to control the device, allowing you to use it one-handed.

    The touch sensors would also generate a pixelated image of your hand as you hold the device, and would be able to identify you by your handprint. The device would then load a custom profile associated with that handprint, with the particular gestures you use for different actions. The sensors would be able to determine if you are right- or left-handed, and whether the device is being held at 0, 90, 180 and 270 degrees, thus eliminating the need for an orientation lock button.

    The main goal here seems to be removing buttons in order to make the screen bigger. As the patent notes, "the device may include a limited number of physical buttons and switches," but "it is generally desirable to keep the number limited on the front surface so that the available space of the device can be saved for the display." So it looks like the Home button may soon be on its way out.

    Source: Slashgear
    This article was originally published in forum thread: Future Devices Will Have Touch-Sensitive Cases started by Paul Daniel Ash View original post