The biggest change that analysts and industry watchers are expected to see in the next iPhone is its Force Touch screen.
Force Touch is the technology already found in the Apple Watch’s display that allows it to detect pressure in addition to taps and swipes.
Now, 9to5Mac’s Mark Gurman has revealed a ton of details that explain how this Force Touch functionality will change the way you use your iPhone.
The project is currently being called Orb internally, reports Gurman, who has a very strong track record when it comes to accuracy. Here’s an overview of the shortcuts we can expect per Gurman’s report:
- You’ll be able to Force Touch on a destination in the Maps app to immediately start turn-by-turn directions.
- In the Music app, you would be able to Force Touch on a song in a list to pull up options such as adding a song to a playlist or saving it for offline.
- There’s another feature being tested that would pull up certain shortcuts to destinations within apps after Force Touching the icon on your home screen. For instance, Force Touching the Phone app could bring you to your voicemails, or performing the same action on the News app could bring you to your Favourites or For You tab.
- Apple will borrow some Force Touch gestures from the ones currently available for the Mac. This may include Force Touching a link in Safari a preview of that page.
It’s worth noting that Gurman says these features are being tested, so it’s possible that we may not see all of them when the final version ships. The report also says that Apple has been experimenting with 4K video recording for its next iPhone, but it’s unclear if that feature will be ready to ship.
Gurman’s latest report is one of several indications that Apple may be planning to integrate Force Touch into the next iPhone. Ming-chi Kuo, an analyst with KGI Securities that’s known for his accuracy when it comes to Apple product predictions, has also been writing for months that the next iPhone will have Force Touch.
Developers are already thinking about how they would integrate Force Touch into their own apps. From what we’ve heard, it sounds like there could be some handy use cases in photography apps specifically.
“I’ve definitely been thinking a lot about it in terms of its capabilities,” Cole Rise, creator of the popular photography app Litely said to Business Insider. “Say, if you wanted to change the colour of something, you could Force Touch and it would change that.”
Apple is expected to unveil its next iPhone on Sept. 9, although the company has yet to send out invitations to the press.
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