Home button - design flaw?

transphasic

macrumors member
Original poster
Apr 6, 2012
98
4
When I purchased an ipod touch a few years back, I remember having an issue with so much functionality being put through a single button, a sure design flaw I felt at the time since pressing one button repeatedly would lead to it breaking quickly.

When I got the ipad, i was pleased that they had added "gestures," so that between that and a smart cover, you could use the ipad for years and never even touch the home button.

Now that i just got an iphone 4s this week, it appears that only the home button can bring you back to the main screen, so it seems like apple has not moved past this basic flaw.

If I was a conspiracist, I'd believe that apple had built-in / planned for people to break these devices' home buttons after a certain amount of time, compelling expensive repairs or complete upgrades.

On the iphone, is there an alternative method to using the home button?
 

Prof.

macrumors 601
Aug 17, 2007
4,862
667
Chicago
I've only ever had a problem with the 1st gen iPod touch home button. So far, my iPhone 4S home button seems to be holding up and I've had it since launch day. However, I've had a couple of friends with previous gen iPhones and their home buttons have almost entirely worn out. Keep in mind, though, these are the people that really don't take care of their stuff. Their iPhones are almost always beyond filthy and there's cosmetic damage from one too many falls.
 

gngan

macrumors 68000
Jan 1, 2009
1,828
72
MacWorld
I had 3G, 3GS and 4S; non of them have issue. I don't see that's a design flaw but i do agree that it has a higher failure rate because it will be used more.

If you are JB then you can use gesture. I use 1 finger scrolling from bottom to top to get to springboard or hold it then the multi task tray comes up.
 

I am Sampson

macrumors 6502
Sep 16, 2007
370
64
Plymouth, UK
I have an iPhone 4 which has a dodgey home button. It is fine most of the the time but every few weeks it starts to stop working (feels the same, but nothing happens).

This is a fix: You need to put the USB cable in and bend it away from the home button (so the bit inside goes up towards the home button) whilst pushing the home button down.

Isn't too good for the cable or iPhone4 dock I'm sure, but it does solve it... for another few weeks.

This flaw in the iPhone is probably the main reason I'll end up getting an iPhone5, would rather reduce my monthly bill as iPhone4 is still fantastic to use and doesn't feel old or outdated asides from this issue.
 

Dandrews524

macrumors 6502
Jan 30, 2009
483
1
New York
i have been using iPhones since the original was released and ive never had a problem with my home button. i wouldnt worry about it too much.
 

sweetbrat

macrumors 65816
Jun 17, 2009
1,443
1
Redford, MI
I've had a 3GS and now a 4S and I haven't had any issues with the home buttons. My 3GS was passed down to my mom and she hasn't had any problems with it, either. Sure, some people have problems with them, but that's true about every part of a phone: there's always some that have problems. I don't really consider it a design flaw.
 

BizRunner

macrumors member
Jul 13, 2009
71
21
Iowa City, Iowa
I bought an iPhone 4 on launch day and my home button fails miserably. I have taken great care of my phone, but when I hit the button sometimes it will go home, sometimes it will bring up multitasking, and sometimes it will do nothing. It is rather frustrating.
 

rever3nce

macrumors 6502a
Apr 6, 2011
567
5
I bought an iPhone 4 on launch day and my home button fails miserably. I have taken great care of my phone, but when I hit the button sometimes it will go home, sometimes it will bring up multitasking, and sometimes it will do nothing. It is rather frustrating.
Have you tried doing the " home button calibration" ?
 

iEnvy

macrumors 65816
Jun 25, 2010
1,126
174
DFW
People who I've seen take care of their iPhones never had a problem with the home button, in fact, the only people I know who had problems with any home buttons were the people who got the very first iPhone 4's with the Phillip screw. Even then, I was given another iPhone 4 for free at the Genius Bar with the home button still in great shape.
 

lilo777

macrumors 603
Nov 25, 2009
5,144
0
X2 on this one. Owned every iphone and have never had a problem period with hardware. Learn to take care of your stuff.
Learn to think. The fact that you had every iphone indicates that you changed them every year. Most people do not do that. Many of them do experience problems with home button (just check this very forum).
 

xAnthony

macrumors 65816
Mar 2, 2010
1,171
115
You can always use assistive touch on your 4s. I do, works great.
I do too sometimes but it gets annoying for me. It gets in the way a lot. I wish they made the square box a lot smaller. Its just way too big in my opinion.
 

musiciscool

macrumors regular
Jun 8, 2008
126
0
Los Angeles, California
I have 2 first run iPhone Fours, and they both have an issue with the home button. They've been kept clean, and have not been dropped etc. One used the apple bumper and zagg, the other has been in an otterbox defender. Stripped of their protection they look brand new and are immaculate. The home button issue is not because we 'didn't take care of our phones'.
My newer 4s does not exhibit this issue at all.
 

nimski62

macrumors regular
Feb 20, 2008
101
0
Go to settings, general, accessibility and turn on Assistive touch, There you have it. You will never have to use the physical home button again!
 

I am Sampson

macrumors 6502
Sep 16, 2007
370
64
Plymouth, UK
the only people I know who had problems with any home buttons were the people who got the very first iPhone 4's with the Phillip screw.
What do you mean, "Philips screw". I got my iPhone 4 in the early hours on day of release. It has two "Philips" (I.e. cross) screws either side of the dock connector. I assumed all iPhone 4 had this???
 

Shadowbech

macrumors 603
Oct 18, 2011
5,321
1,439
Apple iPhone World
What do you mean, "Philips screw". I got my iPhone 4 in the early hours on day of release. It has two "Philips" (I.e. cross) screws either side of the dock connector. I assumed all iPhone 4 had this???
Yes most iPhone 4 had the philip type screws, however, around october-november, Apple started using Pentalobe screws instead.
 

I am Sampson

macrumors 6502
Sep 16, 2007
370
64
Plymouth, UK
Yes most iPhone 4 had the philip type screws, however, around october-november, Apple started using Pentalobe screws instead.
Thanks, never knew that.
I guess it's not viewed as an actual "issue" which I could walk into an apple shop (not that I'm near one) and demand a switch with my 2 year old phone though, right??? :rolleyes:
 

tkwolf

macrumors 6502
Apr 11, 2012
293
14
This is the one thing that sort of scares me really, the dependency on the home button too much that could put too much stress on it that eventually, it would break and need repair. I use the assistive touch as well and it does get in the way a lot. If it is worth anything, would it be a good idea to make that home button a touch screen like the one you see on HTC? I havn't personally used HTC and have only experimented on it for less than 10 minutes but i do find the "touch screen" home button quite ideal for those who use it a lot.
 

watchthisspace

macrumors 6502a
Apr 11, 2010
618
30
iPhone 4 user/owner since launch. For 4 months now my home button only works 50% of the time. Very annoying. But I will be getting it fixed when I go to an Apple store next month*


*There's no Apple stores in my country.
 

gundas

macrumors newbie
Jun 6, 2012
8
0
My iPhone 4 has the same issue, took it into Apple yesterday and since I'm out of warranty they quoted me 149+tax for a replacement. I have an additional year warranty from my credit card company so they will send me the money for the replacement. Hopefully I luck out and get the 4s instead of the 4 as a replacement :p (are they still doing that?)
 

dccorona

macrumors 68020
Jun 12, 2008
2,033
1
I have most of my old iPhones...my iPhone 3G was used for a total of 3-4ish years between me and then my mom, and the home button is still totally fine.
 

macuser420311

macrumors newbie
Jun 6, 2012
1
0
Greenwood, Ms
iphone 4 problems

alright so i just signed up to macrumors and i dont know how to make a new post or thread or whatever but i figured one of you would read this, so my iphone 4 turned off and will not turn back on for any method i have seen on here, it was warm when i noticed it was off, it was at around 45% battery life, i used it one second and the next second it was off, i have tried holding the home button+power button for like 5 minutes, i have blow air in the audio jack and the charger port, i have done every kind of button holding and clicking that i have read and nothing works, held the home button with itunes open on my computer and plugged it up still i can hold it for 5 minutes and still nothing, so what do u think forum is it dead or can it still be saved without sending it in to apple, oh and it is jailbroken, although even with it being jailbroken this phone has never had a problem until now never had an overheat waring or anything, dont know what to think with this one if anyone has any ideas dont hesitate to email me at gandc8486@hotmail.com, or mad_man455@hotmail.com thanks guys
 
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