RUMOR: Apple’s 4G iPhone to feature multi-touch-sensitive case; like Magic Mouse on back of iPhone

January Clearance Blowout ends 1/14“Apple Inc.’s latest iPhone will probably be available as early as June, include a more advanced [5-megapixel] camera, and may feature a touch-sensitive casing, Goldman Sachs Group Inc. analyst Robert Chen said in an interview, without identifying who gave him the information,” Tim Culpan and Stephen Engle report for Bloomberg.

“‘Apple’s going to put a lot of innovation, not just on the hardware, but also on the software of the new iPhone,’ said Taipei-based Chen, a member of Asia’s top-ranked technology hardware research team,” Culpan and Engle report. “The handset will feature a new plastic casing similar to that used for Apple’s touch-panel Magic Mouse released last year, he said.”

Culpan and Engle report, “Magic Mouse, a computer mouse released in October, has a touch-sensitive solid plastic shell that replaces mechanical buttons. The technology may be replicated in the new iPhone to offer touch-sensitive features on the rear of the handset, Chen said.”

Full article here.

28 Comments

  1. Hope not… I don’t have a magic mouse but sometimes the mighty mouse I have drives me crazy with it’s pressure sensitive left and right buttons. This is the artsy fartsy part of Apple esthetics that can be so aggravating to the end user!

  2. The iPhone already does have “the same plastic as the magic mouse” on its back.

    The “plastic” is just almost completely irrelevant to the MagicMouse’s functionality – the copper antenna array below the plastic is what’s doing the actual work.

    And I see no plausible motivation whatsoever to make the back of the iPhone touch-sensitive.

  3. …instantly putting lots of case makers out of business, and instantly exposing lots of iPhones to more dings, scrapes and scratches.

    I don’t quite see this happening. What would be cool is if you can perform certain features to the phone by just tapping/shaking the whole thing. e.g. it rings, and you want to silence it? Just shake the phone. it’s asleep and you want to wake it up to see the lock screen? shake it, etc.

  4. How could this possibly work? If you’re using the back to make finger gestures, how can you see the screen to know what you’re doing? Unless I guess if it was just basic finger gestures that could be performed while the screen is facing you. Hmm…

    Ok, so I can see how it could work now. But even so, it wouldn’t be able to do anything the touchscreen can’t. What’s the point in making finger gestures on the back when you can just do it on the touchscreen?

  5. I too like the mighty mouse except if they could have fixed the problem with the ball. the touch sensitive right and left clicks worked fine wish they would turn this setting on in my colleges computer lab which of course they lock the settings so you cant turn on secondary button which is helpful and all the non apple users are always asking how to right click and lol its funny because they dont know about the usb on the keyboards and you always see them turning there the computer around to put in there flash drives

  6. I so look forward to the 26th!!!!! Then maybe all the hype about the “tablet” and iPhone will be comments not ideas different people have, iam very excited about both the tablet and new iPhone though!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I read macDailynews constantly and am waiting in anticapation like a kid before Christmas!!!!

  7. Let’s keep in mind this is all rumor. I trust the design group at Apple to get it right most of the time, and in my experience, the magic mouse is the finest mouse ever. Once you acclimate to the touch sensitivity and functioning, it’s pretty much perfect.

  8. I doubt the back of the case will be active, I think they may somehow use a panel to replace the mechanical home button, I recall that is something in the original iPhone design that Steve Jobs was never satisfied with – a touch-sensitive area that requires a certain amount of force could possibly replace the mechanical button on the bottom edge of front. Maybe even an unlock swipe could be integrated in that bottom area where the home button now resides

  9. I am also doubting the active rear touch area(s). See it as too much of a problem with case designs. Maybe with a pressure senitive as well, but still very unlikely to me.

    Rumor and more rumor stacked so high now that anything short of a thousand year tech lead will send Apple stock falling like President Clinton’s pants in the oval office!

  10. “What’s the point in making finger gestures on the back when you can just do it on the touchscreen?”

    ‘Cause when you’re holding it, you got four to eight fingers back there. Personally, I doubt an Apple device, if forthcoming, will have a control area on the back, but I can see some utility for such.

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