Future Apple Watch to Adopt Solid State Buttons With Haptic Feedback

Discussion in 'MacRumors.com News Discussion' started by MacRumors, Jun 8, 2018.

  1. MacRumors macrumors bot


    Apr 12, 2001

    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.

    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
  2. CerebralX macrumors 6502


    Jun 28, 2013
    Looking for a place of freedom and rationality
    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.
  3. Wanted797 macrumors 6502a


    Oct 28, 2011
    I'm wondering how they'll do a solid state digital crown.
  4. scrapesleon macrumors 6502a


    Mar 30, 2017
    OH boy time to upgrade again this one is possibly slimmer
  5. garylapointe macrumors 68000


    Feb 19, 2006
    Dearborn (Detroit), MI, USA
    So I can't push the button with standard gloves on?

    Isn't that the button I need to push in emergencies?!?
  6. givemeanapple macrumors Demi-God


    Oct 2, 2016
  7. Saipher macrumors 6502


    Oct 25, 2014
    Sounds promising! So, greater depth water resistance? It will be time for me to update my Series 2 :)
  8. cmaier macrumors G5

    Jul 25, 2007
    Spins but doesn’t depress ?
  9. citysnaps macrumors 603

    Oct 10, 2011
    San Francisco
    Why not? If it's like the taptic trackpads used in recent MacBook/MacBook Pros (which work great, btw), it should work fine with regular gloves.
  10. Piggie macrumors G3


    Feb 23, 2010
    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.
  11. Pupi macrumors 6502


    Apr 12, 2015
    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.
  12. Macaholic868 macrumors 6502


    Feb 2, 2017
    I’m not crazy about moves like this. There’s nothing that lets you know you’ve pushed a button on a device better than feeling the click but I get that the more they can seal up a device the better they can water proof it.
  13. mazz0 macrumors 68000


    Mar 23, 2011
    Leeds, UK
    I think that’s a great idea for clicking. Wonder if it’ll apply to spinning as well.
  14. Robert.Walter macrumors 68000


    Jul 10, 2012
  15. ImperfectLion macrumors newbie

    Oct 16, 2014
    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.
  16. newdeal macrumors 68020

    Oct 21, 2009
    I kind wish I could just tilt my wrist to scroll through things to be honest
  17. macduke macrumors G4


    Jun 27, 2007
    Central U.S.
    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.
  18. alwaysbeincontact macrumors regular


    Apr 9, 2014
    cool, this will probably increase the depth in the water too.
  19. IJ Reilly macrumors P6

    IJ Reilly

    Jul 16, 2002
    When buttons can be controlled with your mind maybe they won't be physical, but they don't stop being physical simply by being non-electromechanical. They still detects a touch or press with your finger, just in a different way.
  20. Uplift macrumors 6502

    Feb 1, 2011
    It literally feels like a click.
  21. JPack macrumors 601


    Mar 27, 2017
    About time. The current Watch form factor is starting to get dated after 3 years.
  22. Bpa260 macrumors newbie


    Nov 4, 2014
    Please get rid of the Terminator red eye dot looking at us
  23. agsystems macrumors 6502a

    Aug 1, 2013
    I might be weird but I don’t use the spinning wheel - I always touch The screen to make selections
  24. lkrupp macrumors 6502a

    Jul 24, 2004
    There are many brands and styles of gloves these days that have conductive fingertips. I have a pair myself and my iPhone 8 works just fine when wearing them.
  25. coolfactor macrumors 601

    Jul 29, 2002
    Vancouver, BC
    I think the Digital Crown will still spin. There's just something satisfying about that.
    --- Post Merged, Jun 8, 2018 ---
    Do you own one?

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