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iPhone 15: Are haptic buttons at risk? There is a potential setback for this unique addition

Reversing a key feature

iPhone 15: Are haptic buttons at risk? There is a potential setback for this unique addition
David Bernal Raspall

David Bernal Raspall

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The anticipated novelty of haptic buttons for the iPhone 15 Pro and iPhone 15 Pro Max models has suffered a setback. It’s still too early to tell exactly what’s going on, but while yesterday we all took it for granted that this was one of the new features of Apple’s next generation of phones, today things look quite different.

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According to the latest information shared by renowned Apple analyst Ming-Chi Kuo. The new iPhone 15 Pro and Pro Max would have to abandon the incorporation of solid-state buttons due to some technical problems that are not finding a solution before mass production of the devices has to start.

Now that you do, now that you don’t…

Kuo had claimed in October that the iPhone 15 Pro models would come equipped with solid-state buttons. The idea was to incorporate two additional haptic motors inside the phone to provide haptic feedback, simulating the sensation of pressing buttons without them physically moving. A design, bridging the gap, that would be similar to the Home button on the iPhone 7 or the Force Touch trackpad on the latest MacBooks.

Now, however, in a Medium post, Kuo comments that the devices will feature physical buttons after all. In his words, “my latest survey indicates that due to unresolved technical issues prior to mass production, both high-end iPhone 15 Pro models (Pro and Pro Max) will abandon the long-awaited solid-state button design and revert to the traditional physical button design.”

What’s up in the air, here, is whether “traditional” refers to the technology behind the buttons themselves or the layout. Recall that for this generation of iPhone, Apple is pitching a couple of changes. The first is the unification of the two volume buttons into one, while the second is the switch to a solid button technology.

Kuo notes that there is still time to modify the design of the iPhone 15 Pro, as the device is in the EVT stage of development. He also believes that the change will have a “limited impact” on the mass production schedule and shipments of the Pro models. In other words, that given the supposed impossibility of switching to the new technology for the buttons, going back to the regular ones will allow Apple to continue with its planned release schedule.

Jeff Pu and Shelly Chou, technology analysts at Hong Kong-based investment firm Haitong International Securities, also reported this design change. As picked up by MacRumors, Pu and Chou commented that “based on our supply chain checks, we now expect the iPhone 15 Pro series to revert to the current physical button design due to a more complex design.” Analysts believe that the solid-state button design has been delayed until the iPhone 16 series in 2024.

What remains to be seen among all these rumorology changes is what will happen with the redesigned mute switch. Another of the big new features planned for the iPhone 15 Pro and Pro Max. The idea, always according to rumors, is that Apple would replace the switch with a button that would allow, in addition to mute our phone, perform other actions. Something very much in line with the action button of the Apple Watch Ultra and that could now reach the iPhone.

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The expectation of new iPhone models too often pushes us to look for information in rumors and leaks that do not necessarily have to be all that reliable. Apple’s plans, moreover, can change quickly, as this case suggests. Given what we’ve seen, let’s remember that those plans can change again, so until we see the new iPhone 15 on stage at Apple Park, we can’t take anything for granted. What we can confirm, for now and while we wait for WWDC 2023, is that everything seems to indicate that these new phones will be simply spectacular.

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David Bernal Raspall

David Bernal Raspall

Architect | Founder of hanaringo.com | Apple Technologies Trainer | Writer at Softonic and iDoo_tech, formerly at Applesfera

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