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Original poster
Apr 12, 2001
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A future version of the Apple Watch will be updated with solid state buttons that don't physically click but instead use a Taptic Engine to provide haptic feedback to users, reports Fast Company.

Apple will continue to use a two button configuration with a Digital Crown and a Side button, but neither button will be a traditional physical button.

applewatchseries3-800x308.jpg
Apple will stick with the Watch's current button configuration, with a button and a digital crown situated on one side of the device, but neither will physically click as before. Rather than reacting to the user's touch by physically moving back and forth, the new buttons will vibrate slightly under the fingertip, using the haptic effect Apple calls the Taptic Engine. (The digital crown will still physically rotate to navigate through content.)
What Fast Company is describing is the same solid state button design that Apple first introduced with the iPhone 7 and the iPhone 7 Plus Home button. These devices, and later iPhones with a Home button, use solid state buttons that provide haptic feedback from the built-in Taptic Engine to mimic a button press. Apple uses a similar method for its MacBook and MacBook Pro trackpads, which also lack physical buttons.

Solid state buttons will improve water resistance in the Apple Watch and also take up less space, leaving more room for a bigger battery or other components. Fast Company's source also alleges Apple is working on using the top of the buttons as sensors to gather health-related data like heart rhythms as some types of measurements require more than one point of contact with a user's skin.

According to Fast Company, the Apple Watch could adopt solid state buttons as early as 2018, but if the feature doesn't make it into the 2018 Apple Watch models, solid state buttons will be introduced in 2019. In the future, beyond 2019, Apple is also said to be working towards a watch that has no buttons at all, with the sides of the device designed to respond to touch and swipe-based gestures.

Previous 2018 Apple Watch rumors have made no mention of solid state buttons, but we have heard that the fourth-generation Apple Watch models could feature a display that's 15 percent larger, perhaps through a reduction in bezel size. New models are also said to feature a longer battery life and improved health monitoring capabilities.

Article Link: Future Apple Watch to Adopt Solid State Buttons With Haptic Feedback
 

Piggie

macrumors G3
Feb 23, 2010
8,748
3,330
I always felt this was obvious.

Why have a physical wheel (crown) that actually spins?
You need a shaft and waterproofing.
And it's pointless.
With today's tech, you can have the exact same looking wheel, but its stationary, and as you move your finger tip across it as you do now, instead of it physically spinning, it's surface just detects your finger movement and passes on the movement to the watch.

Think of it exactly like the iPod circular control dial/disk.
You ran your finger around it, to do things just as you would have a moving wheel.
But your finger just slipped over the surface, and it stayed still

I knew this was going to happen as it's so obvious and the user experience will be 99/9% the same as it is now.
With e benefit of no moving parts.
 

Pupi

macrumors 6502
Apr 12, 2015
359
658
Going down the force touch route for Apple Watch, I think it's a good idea. This will probably allow each individual user to set their feedback levels differently to suit their preferences.
Seems more like just capacitive buttons like the home button in the iPhone 7 and 8. Apple Watch was already the device that debuted force touch to begin with.
 

ImperfectLion

macrumors newbie
Oct 16, 2014
26
88
Sound good, but I probably won’t like it because if it works anything like the home button on the iPhone 7, then you can’t “press” it if you aren’t using your fingers (e.g if you try pressing the button and there’s a cloth / glove over your finger then it won’t work)
If they managed to fix that problem then it’ll be great.
 

macduke

macrumors G4
Jun 27, 2007
11,779
16,487
Central U.S.
So I can't push the button with standard gloves on?

Isn't that the button I need to push in emergencies?!?
No. The iPhone required your gloves to be off because of Touch ID. Though curiously the button, if I remember right, only sensed a press if it sensed your skin on the outer rim of metal. This was perhaps done to prevent it from going off in your pants all the time. My iPhone X does this and it really annoys me. I sometimes have it in my pocket while mowing and when I get sweaty it registers through my pocket if I don’t have it turned around facing outward. It will dial my emergency contacts randomly. I hate that.
 

coolfactor

macrumors 603
Jul 29, 2002
5,224
5,696
Vancouver, BC
I always felt this was obvious.

Why have a physical wheel (crown) that actually spins?
You need a shaft and waterproofing.
And it's pointless.
With today's tech, you can have the exact same looking wheel, but its stationary, and as you move your finger tip across it as you do now, instead of it physically spinning, it's surface just detects your finger movement and passes on the movement to the watch.

Think of it exactly like the iPod circular control dial/disk.
You ran your finger around it, to do things just as you would have a moving wheel.
But your finger just slipped over the surface, and it stayed still

I knew this was going to happen as it's so obvious and the user experience will be 99/9% the same as it is now.
With e benefit of no moving parts.

I think the Digital Crown will still spin. There's just something satisfying about that.
[doublepost=1528502382][/doublepost]
About time. The current Watch form factor is starting to get dated after 3 years.

Do you own one?
 
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