Apple to ditch "Home" button from iPhone and iPad? Don't bet on it!

Apple to ditch "Home" button from iPhone and iPad? Don't bet on it!

Summary: Another day, another rumor, this time that Apple will "at some point in time" ditch the iconic "Home" button from the iPhone and iPad and replace it instead with multi-touch gestures.

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TOPICS: Apple, iPhone, iPad, Mobility
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Another day, another rumor, this time that Apple will "at some point in time" ditch the iconic "Home" button from the iPhone and iPad and replace it instead with multi-touch gestures.

BGR kicks off the rumor:

We just got some pretty wild information from one of our Apple sources and while it’s hard to believe at first, it does make sense. We have exclusively been told that the reason Apple just added multitouch gestures for the iPad in the latest iOS 4.3 beta is because the iPad will be losing the home button. Yes, we are told that Apple, at some point in time, will remove the home button from the iPad’s design. Instead of button taps, you will use new multitouch gestures to navigate to the home screen and also to launch the app switcher.

I dunno, seems like a step back to me. That button is more than cosmetic, it serves as a valuable kill-switch for apps, and one that developers aren't supposed to mess with. It's a fast, easy to close or switch apps. It could only be clearer if it actually said "HOME" on it. It also comes in handy for rebooting when apps of the OS play up ... a function that could never be reliably handed over to a gesture.

Another big pointer to this being nonsense is the use of the phrase "we are told that Apple, at some point in time" ... has anyone, ever, had access to such a long term leak as that? If it had said "next generation" I might be willing to take that with a huge pinch of salt, but if anyone has accurate premonitions about what Apple is going to do "at some point in time" then they should go buy the winning lotto tickets.

... wait ... I'm getting some pretty wild information from one of my lotto sources and while it's hard to believe at first, it does make sense. I've been exclusively told that this week's lotto numbers are ... Hey! I'm not telling you what they are, get your own damn sources!

I call "Pah" on this rumor, so quit hassling me about when you can buy one or how much it will cost! Same goes for that "secretly filmed at CES iPad 2" video making the rounds. If you can't pick out at least 5 things that point to that being a fakey made using a mock-up then you probably think Jar Jar Binks is real.

Topics: Apple, iPhone, iPad, Mobility

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15 comments
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  • Sounds...

    REVOLUTIONARY.
    Feldwebel Wolfenstool
  • RE: Apple to ditch

    "It also comes in handy for rebooting when apps of the OS play up ? a function that could never be reliably handed over to a gesture."

    "Play up"? That's a new usage of that phrase. Normally when I think of "play up" I think of somebody recommending something in a perhaps-too-positive way. I've never heard of "play up" being used to describe an app crash, ever.

    (checks online dictionary)
    http://idioms.thefreedictionary.com/play+up

    Yup, I do believe you're using the idiom incorrectly. It means "to make someone or something seem to be more important." And I don't see anything saying anything about an application crashing or whatever.

    In any case, aren't phones supposed to fix the hassles of rebooting that PCs have? Isn't that one the the things that people play up whenever they claim that some mobile tech is superior to PCs?
    CobraA1
    • Enter Noun is playing up is a common phrase in the UK

      @CobraA1 <br><br>I often use the expression my computer is playing up, or my car is playing up etc.<br><br>It's common phrase to describe something not working as it should.<br><br>From <a href="http://oxforddictionaries.com/view/entry/m_en_gb0639320#m_en_gb0639320.158" target="_blank" rel="nofollow">http://oxforddictionaries.com/view/entry/m_en_gb0639320#m_en_gb0639320.158</a><br><br>"play up<br>1 informal (of a child) misbehave:<br>I hadn't had much sleep-the kids had been playing up<br>fail to function properly:<br>his phone line was constantly playing up"
      DevJonny
      • RE: Apple to ditch

        @DevJonny Ok, it's a UK thing, then.
        CobraA1
  • Isn't the &quot;Home&quot; button used for Hard Resets

    Thats all fine and dandy but some "old school" buttons are still going to be needed. As it stands now you need to use the Home Button along with the power button if you ever need to do a hard reset to erase the phone or troubleshoot/fix an issue.
    bobiroc
    • press and hold sleep and home button does a hard reset

      @bobiroc but press and hold the sleep button alone does shut down.. they could likely just add a Sleep or Shut Down dialog.. the only other thing i can think of is fast click sleep + home button does screen capture.. that could be migrated as well.. can't really think of a good reason they couldn't get rid of that button and do all that hardware based stuff from the sleep button on the top of the device..
      doctorSpoc
      • RE: Apple to ditch

        @doctorSpoc

        Well keep in mind that sometimes mult-touch gestures are not always possible.

        1. Have your hands full and can only get one hand out to hit a button and maybe awkwardly slide your thumb to answer a call.

        2. Wearing gloves because it is cold outside and you need do do a simple function on your phone that can be done with a press or two from a button.

        Things like that.
        bobiroc
      • RE: Apple to ditch

        @doctorSpoc Apple prides itself on accessibility. The iOS devices are widely regarded as the best for people who are blind. Removing the home button, or any button for that matter, would make it more difficult for people with certain disabilities to use them properly.
        HCMarks
  • But having one button

    Is too complicated for users ;)
    The one and only, Cylon Centurion
    • Correction

      @Cylon Centurion 0005

      Having one button is too complicated for *Apple* users. ;-)
      rtk
    • the more buttons on a device.. the more stuff to break..

      @Cylon Centurion 0005 .. and the less reliable it will be.. that's just a fact.. especially a button that gets pressed likely 100-200+ times a day.. the new gestures really make that button redundant..

      how many buttons do android and win7 phones have again.. same goes for ports.. one of my biggest gripes against Motorola was their ports would alway futz up.. more sights of entry for dust and water etc..
      doctorSpoc
      • RE: Apple to ditch

        @doctorSpoc ROFL that makes no sense. The buttons on the front are touch and the top are hardware. They will wear out over time but not that much, and I'm pretty sure I push that button more than 200 times a day.
        Jimster480
  • RE: Apple to ditch

    Oh no, what ever will we do!
    james347
  • RE: Apple to ditch

    After using WP7 for a while, I really do appreciate the hardware buttons, nor do I need an app to map a camera button to volume ;-)
    tonymcs@...
  • Why do you bloggers always hang on the every rubbish Apple rumour?

    Seriously, why not stick to a few facts from time to time and don't give the rumour-mongers the satisfaction. After all, most of the unofficial "rumours" come directly from Apple's PR department anyways!
    Scrat