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iPhone 6 may feature advanced haptic feedback

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iPhone 6
iPhone 6

The iPhone 6 may feature a more advanced haptic motor than the iPhone 5S, and be able to produce far more nuanced feedback.

According to Chinese site Laoyaoba, which cites unnamed insider sources, the iPhone 6 is going to have a new haptic feedback motor much more sophisticated than the one in the iPhone 5S.

MacRumors writes that the component is expected to cost 2-3 times the amount of the $0.60 motor of the iPhone 5S. So, a $1.80 motor, then.

We’ve seen extremely impressive haptic demos in the past couple of years, but don’t expect the iPhone 6 to be able to emulate the feel of stroking a hedgehog on a summer’s day or wiping away a child’s tears on a beach in the South of France.

The feedback motor of the iPhone 6 still sounds conventional - described as a tactile linear feedback motor - but should be capable of much more subtle gradations of force, and potentially much greater force, than the current model.

Back in 2012, an Apple patent detailing an “intelligent multi-tiered haptics system” was uncovered by PatentlyApple. It showed a way to use haptics to create contours on the screen itself.

However, with the iPhone 6 strongly rumoured to use Sapphire glass – which is more-or-less that hardest glass you can get – this sort of science fiction step forward seems highly unlikely.

It seems more likely that cleverer feedback may be used more conventionally throughout the interface, although we have not heard any news of uncovered haptics code in iOS 8.

Apple’s iPhone 6 is due to launch this September, with the most important improvement being a bigger, higher-resolution screen.

A 4.7-inch phone is the most commonly referenced design, although some suggest Apple will also release a 5.5-inch version, creating a degree of parity with the iPad mini/iPad Air split on the tablet side.

Next, read more about what's new in iOS 8

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