If that’s the case then the next new patent could make both the iPhone and iPad look more like the Apple Watch. One of the core features and main navigational entry points for the Watch is the Digital Crown that sits on the side of the device. As part of its experience, Apple invites device owners to interact with that to not only scroll through content in an effortless manner, but to also enter multitasking, switch apps, talk to Siri and even zoom in and out of the apps menu in no time or fuss.
The Apple Watch Digital Crown has been granted as such a success that it seems Apple is looking at implementing a similar hardware crown on future iPhone and iPad models, as for the proof, witnessed by a newly published patent application.
First of all we have to note in mind is that filing and being granted a patent for a specific feature or piece of technology not necessarily mean that it will extremely make it onto a future device or product. Companies like Apple literally hold thousands of patents that have been certified by organizations like the United States Patent and Trademark Office, and it’s however fair to suggest that only a relatively small percentage of those granted patents actually make it into a new device production. With the claimed, the idea of a Digital Crown mechanism for iPhone and iPad certainly does seem to offer some benefits.
The Digital Crown on the Apple Watch makes perfect sense, as it may have enhanced functionality when combined with the underlying watchOS on the device. After all, it’s actually also a representation of the traditional crown mechanism that is found on standard watches. Also makes it more popular with consumers with its familiarity.
From an iPhone, iPad point of view, it seems that Apple potentially envisages a Digital Crown-style implementation to be used as a volume controller or to instantly lock the touch screen on the device. Or else it could also be used to quickly capture a photograph, resizing text to make it smaller or larger, zoom in and zoom out, and of course, a whole array of other actions controlled via software.
What’s more catchy in this patent application is the part of it that hints at a future iPhone and iPad model without a bezel, as note by Patent Apple.
In some examples, the device may not have a border region and may instead have a surface composed only of touch screen.
A bezel-free iPhone or iPad with an entirely touch-sensitive surface area controlled via a unique Digital Crown on the side of the hardware you say? Honestly to say, we recognize that this one is unlikely to see the light of day, but nevertheless we can dream about that bezel-free device in the future, may be in 2017?
(Via: Patently Apple)
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