iPhone 7 Again Rumored to Have Flush, Touch-Sensitive Home Button

Apple may be planning to introduce a Force Touch home button on the iPhone 7, according to analysts at Cowen and Company (via Business Insider). Citing supply chain "field checks," Cowen and Company predicts the iPhone 7 will do away with a physical home button, instead adopting a home button that sits flush with the phone.

Apple's Force Touch technology will reportedly be built into the home button to provide haptic feedback when pressed, much like the Force Touch trackpad on Apple's most recent MacBooks. With haptic feedback, iPhone users would still feel the sensation of pressing on the home button even without a button to actually depress.

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Cowen and Company has a mixed track record, but it's worth noting that we've heard two other rumors about a redesigned home button on the iPhone 7. In April, DigiTimes said Apple was testing a touch-sensitive home button that fits flush with the phone, and a highly sketchy image of what was said to be an iPhone 7 with a touch-sensitive home button surfaced in mid-June.

Given the unreliability of each of the home button rumors, the information should be viewed with some skepticism until confirmed by a more reliable source, but when viewed alongside rumors of improved waterproofing and the removal of the headphone jack, a flush home button is not a rumor that seems entirely out of the question.

For several months, we've heard mixed rumors about the possibility of better water resistance in the iPhone 7, but it appears to be shaping up to be a potential feature. Last week, The Wall Street Journal, often a reliable source, lent credence to the rumor by suggesting the elimination of the headphone jack in the iPhone 7 will improve its water resistance.

At the same time, The Wall Street Journal has said the iPhone 7 will feature only "subtle changes," a sentiment echoed by KGI Securities analyst Ming-Chi Kuo, who said the iPhone 7 will be a modest update without "many attractive selling points." A revamped home button seems like more than a minor change, so we'll need to wait for additional information to resolve some of the conflicting information we're hearing about Apple's next-generation iPhones.

If the physical home button is replaced with a Force Touch home button in the iPhone 7, it will bring Apple one step closer to eliminating the home button all together, something that is rumored for the iPhone 8, coming in 2017. Apple is said to be planning on introducing an edge-to-edge display with built-in Touch ID functionality and no home button.

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Top Rated Comments

japanime Avatar
103 months ago
A home button that is flush with the front panel ... and a protruding camera lens that sticks out like a sore thumb on the back panel. :D
Score: 25 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Menopause Avatar
103 months ago
Gotta give it to Apple this time around, they have spammed rumors into the mill like the king of Nigeria himself. All hail the king of Nigeria.
Score: 18 Votes (Like | Disagree)
mcfrazieriv Avatar
103 months ago
Any rumors to whether or not they'll write
HOME BUTTON
right on the circle in super huge totally redesigned font? I mean...
Score: 16 Votes (Like | Disagree)
twocents Avatar
103 months ago
Would be something else if they can manage to make the entire bottom bezel of the phone the home "button", similar to the trackpad on the Mac. No matter where your thumb sits, esp. with the Plus models, you can still access it.

And it would be a good logical step in moving users over to the future where Touch ID is embedded in the display and to give Apple the time and opportunity to work out the kinks to transition to a full display front face

Can't innovate anymore my ass!
Score: 14 Votes (Like | Disagree)
noles1983 Avatar
103 months ago
get rid of the bezels!
Score: 13 Votes (Like | Disagree)
mw360 Avatar
103 months ago
Can't help thinking the concave nature of the home button served an actual usability function. Haven't Apple's designers learned anything from Can'ttellwhichwayupmyAppleTVremoteis-gate?
Score: 11 Votes (Like | Disagree)