In the run up to the release of a new device, it’s always incredibly interesting to see which rumors start to fly around, and it’s always interesting to see which rumors actually materialise when it comes to crunch time. Naturally, some of these rumors will be a little more far fetched than others, but personally, the most reliable pointers to future developments are patents.
With that being said, yesterday (Thursday) Patently Appleconfirmed a few recent patents that point to some very interesting technological initiatives that might grace our devices in the next few years. The patents involve touch screen technology known as “haptic feedback”.
This was a rumor circulating in the run up to the new iPad launch, but it didn’t actually appear. This new patent shows that Apple are working on a more advanced multi-tiered haptic feedback system. To explain it in Layman’s terms, this technology would allow a device display to change shape, adding contours and buttons to a display enhancing the touch screen experience.
The diagram above shows how the technology could be used to create raised buttons on the display, or perhaps raise portions of the display to reflect contours on a geographical map.
The technology would also respond differently to different inputs. It could, for instance, measure the force with which you touched a particular area of the display and perform an action accordingly. For example, if you were using the device’s camera, a light touch might tell the device to take a picture, but a heavier touch could mean record. There is even the possibility that this technology could recover the energy from user input to prolong battery life.
The more I researched this particular avenue, the more I got excited at the world of possibilities that haptic feedback could open up to us. Is this something that you would be excited to see in a device, the next iPhone perhaps? Leave a comment below, and be sure to follow me on Twitter for all the latest Apple news, reviews and rumors.
Via: Patently Apple