Kuo: iPhone 15 Pro Models to Feature Solid-State Buttons and Three Taptic Engines

The iPhone 15 Pro models may feature solid-state volume and power buttons, according to Apple analyst Ming-Chi Kuo.

Taptic Engine iPhone 6sThe Taptic Engine in the iPhone 6S – the first ‌iPhone‌ model to feature the component.

In a tweet, Kuo explained that the volume and power buttons on next year's two high-end ‌iPhone‌ models may adopt a solid-state design, similar to the ‌iPhone‌ 7's home button, replacing a mechanical button design that physically depresses. Apple uses a similar method for its Mac trackpads, which do not physically move and simply mimic the feeling of being pressed with small vibrations.

The new iPhones will reportedly feature additional Taptic Engines on the internal left and right sides to provide feedback to users, making it seem as though they are pressing physical buttons. The change means that the number of Taptic Engines in each ‌iPhone‌ will increase from one to three.

Apple was rumored to be planning to switch the Apple Watch to solid-state buttons several years ago, but the change never took place. At the time, it was said that solid-state buttons would improve water resistance and take up less internal space, but it is not clear if that would be the case for the ‌iPhone‌ since sufficient space for two more Taptic Engines would be required.

In an additional thread, Kuo said that "the buttonless design and switch to USB-C are two of the major updates for iPhone 15."

Related Roundup: iPhone 15
Buyer's Guide: iPhone 15 (Caution)
Related Forum: iPhone

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Top Rated Comments

MayaUser Avatar
22 months ago
Don't you need "real" buttons to turn on or force restart the device? Otherwise some part of the software needs to always work/run.
Score: 77 Votes (Like | Disagree)
james2538 Avatar
22 months ago

not if Apple increase the battery, but for say, you are right
Seems like increasing the battery size + additional Taptic Engines will just increase the weight for no real reason.

The iPhone Pro/Max are already heavy enough as it is. They just slowly keep getting fatter every year.
Score: 25 Votes (Like | Disagree)
verdi1987 Avatar
22 months ago

Copy that. I'm all for the return of rounded edges.
I hope that never comes to pass. :) It’s much less slippery with squared edges. It also makes the back glass easily replaceable if damaged ($29 with AC+ on iPhone 12 and higher vs. $99 on the rounded models).
Score: 24 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Will Co Avatar
22 months ago

Don't you need "real" buttons to turn on or force restart the device? Otherwise some part of the software needs to always work/run.

battery will take a hit.
The engine will probably have a deep sleep mode which is capable of handling a basic button press gesture without other hardware or software support. Such modes are common in power, supervisor and push button controller type devices. Means the rest of the device is fully powered down and this chip is sipping just uA or even nA of current. No significant effect on battery in this mode.

A bit more juice to run the Taptic feedback effects when fully powered up, but I don’t think volume and power buttons are a heavy use item anyway.
Score: 19 Votes (Like | Disagree)
james2538 Avatar
22 months ago

A bit more juice to run the Taptic feedback effects when fully powered up, but I don’t think volume and power buttons are a heavy use item anyway.
Uh, the power button? That’s used significantly throughout my day to turn off the display.
Score: 19 Votes (Like | Disagree)
teknikal90 Avatar
22 months ago
battery will take a hit.
Score: 17 Votes (Like | Disagree)