Apple’s iPad, with its sleek aluminum casing, large 9.7-inch display, is widely regarded as one of the most beautiful tablets currently available. But there was a time when it was as thick as a cheap Dell notebook and made from tacky white plastic — as these images of an early iPad prototype prove.
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A U.K. judge has ruled in favor of HTC over claims that the Taiwanese smartphone vendor infringes four of Apple’s patents for touchscreen technology, including its famous slide-to-unlock feature. Judge Christopher Floyd decided that HTC’s smartphones are not guilty of infringement, and that three of Apple’s four patents are invalid.
Apple has traditionally been opposed to putting a touchscreen on any of its products, leaving touch capabilities to only iOS powered devices. This hasn’t stopped the third party market though, as you can now buy an accessory that supposedly turns your iMac into a full, touch enabled computer.
Apple has a patent for a touchscreen iMac with an arm that swivels the display down to allow you to manipulate the display more like an iPad, without getting “gorilla arm.” It’s a cool patent, but what would that iMac look like in real life? Motion graphics and 3D animation student Joakim Ulseth put together an awesome video bringing an iMac Touch running OS X Mountain Lion to life. There’s a lot of problems with this sort of design, and Apple would never in a million years release it, but it sure does make a sexy video.
- Via iFans
Your iPhone’s touchscreen might look just like a single pane of living glass, but there’s a lot more going on than meets the eye. Every iPhone is comprised of multiple layers: an LCD that actually blasts the pixels out of the Retina Display, a glass substrate laye separating the LCD from the touch layer that translates your finger swipes and prods into input the system can read, and a layer of protective Gorilla Glass on top.
Obviously, Apple’s existing touchscreen tech works well, but having so many different layers has its drawbacks. A big one is that it adds to the iPhone’s thickness. But Apple may already be on the cusp of inking a deal with Sharp and Toshiba to adopt in-cell touch panel displays, which should lead to a slimmer, lighter iPhone 5.
As spotted by the beautiful souls over at Reddit, someone in Apple’s patent filing department seems to have taken a shortcut in illustrating an application for way to make a touchscreen iMac useable by tracing the hands of of the divine Renaissance artist, painter and sculptor, Michelangelo.
Hey, you know what they say. Good artists borrow, great artists steal. And trust me, you don’t Apple’s patent clerks drawing their own hands if you value your sanity.
Apple will make its iPad 3 official in just a few hours’ time, but that hasn’t stopped the rumor mill from turning this morning. Having had confirmation from one iOS hacker that the tablet will be the first iOS device to get 1GB of RAM, one report claims that it will also feature a new “E-Sense textured touchscreen” that allows you to feel your display like never before.
One of the biggest criticisms of virtual keyboards on a touchscreen display is that they offers users no feedback, making them more difficult to type on than a traditional keyboard. Designers have attempted to provide solutions to this problem with third-party accessories that clip onto your display, but Apple may be working on its own solution using coded magnets and ferrofluids that could be built into future iPads.
Multitouch is so 2011. The future of computer interaction is gestures. Instead of swiping a finger, say analysts, we’ll be waving our hand. And in one of those ‘back to the future moments,’ Microsoft, which Apple passed in a blur, could be leading the ‘gestures’ movement thanks to its gaming interface Kinect.
A decade ago Apple introduced the iPod, and with it a new method for controlling music playback: a scroll wheel with buttons around the perimeter. The interface was novel for a portable music player, which usually used more traditional buttons in a linear or grid layout.
The scroll wheel was the brainchild of Phil Schiller, Apple’s Director of Marketing. He realized that users would have to navigate large lists of songs, and that a wheel offered an intuitive, dynamic solution.