Is Apple Killing Off The iPhone’s Home Button?

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Future iPhones could use built-in screen fingerprint sensors for security

Apple is planning a major overhaul for future iPhone devices that could see the iconic home button being stripped from the interface.

Sources speaking to AppleInsider have said that Apple is looking to remove the button, currently used to direct users back to the home menu, as well as being used for unlocking the device and authorising mobile payments, in favour of a touch-screen interface.

However, the move is very much a long-term goal, with devices featuring the new build not expected to arrive until 2017 at the earliest.

All-touch

fingerprint scannerIn place of the current design would come a full-screen, buttonless display such as that seen in many Android phone, including the Samsung Galaxy S6 and LG G4.

Locking and unlocking the phone would be taken care of using a touchscreen interface, with a fingerprint scanner built in to the device’s screen.

Such a move would be a positive change for Apple, and would allow for cheaper build and design, as the company wouldn’t need to source hardware for the unit currently housing the home button. It would also allow the company to focus on maximising the display size on future devices, finally getting rid of bezels alongside the iPhone screen.

The news is the latest piece of speculation surrounding Apple’s future devices, as anticipation ramps up ahead of the company’s usual September window for announcing new iPhones.

So far, reports have suggested that either an updated version of Apple’s flagship phone, the supposed iPhone 6S, or a budget version, the iPhone 6C, will be revealed later this year.

This hasn’t stopped rumours speculating what the future iPhone 7 will bring, however, with facial recognition and hand gesture control both mooted for other methods for users to interact with their device.

The latter follows Apple’s acquisition of gesture-control company PrimeSense in 2013.

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