Apple Orders Capacitive Button Components Allegedly for iPhone 16

Apple has ordered a large number of capacitative button components from a Taiwan supplier that are allegedly for use in the upcoming iPhone 16 series, claims a new report out of Asia.

unbox therapy 15 buttons

Image credit: Unbox Therapy

According to the Economic Daily News, Advanced Semiconductor Engineering won the order, which is said to include system-in-a-package (SIP) modules that will be used to integrate capcative components with two Taptic Engine motors, one on either side of the iPhone.

The claim in the report is that Apple will replace the existing physical buttons on both sides of the iPhone 15 with capacitive versions that will provide ‌iPhone 16‌ users with haptic feedback. The latter type of button detects pressure and emulates the press of a physical button via a haptic (or Taptic) engine which generates vibrations.

Apple may well have ordered the buttons in preparation for future production plans, but this does not necessarily mean that they are destined for use in this year's ‌iPhone 16‌ models.

The earliest known prototypes of the ‌‌iPhone 16‌‌ were thought to include haptic power and volume buttons. Project Bongo, as it was known internally, was a redesign of the volume and power buttons on the ‌iPhone 15‌. However, it was scrapped in 2023 following unresolved technical issues, according to MacRumors' sources. After the cancelation of the Bongo project, Apple moved back to mechanical buttons for the ‌‌iPhone 16‌‌.

As a result, most rumors suggest that ‌iPhone 16‌ models will have all-mechanical buttons, and this includes the rumored addition of a fourth button. According to The Information, Apple will add a new "Capture Button" to all ‌iPhone 16‌ models, but the button is expected to be mechanical rather than capacitive, and yet it will be able to respond to pressure and touch.

The button will be used for taking photos and videos, and ‌iPhone‌ users will reportedly be able to zoom in and out by swiping left and right on the button, focus with a light press, and activate a recording with a more forceful press.

Today's report claims the capacitive components will enter volume production in the third quarter of this year, which is unusually late in terms of Apple's typical initial ‌iPhone‌ production run, so the order may be for the ‌iPhone‌ 17 lineup rather than this year's upcoming models. That said, as we saw with the ‌‌iPhone 15‌‌ series, things can change fairly far into the process, so watch this space.

Related Roundups: iPhone 16, iPhone 16 Pro

Popular Stories

new best buy blue

Best Buy's Memorial Day Sale Has Record Low Prices on iPads, MacBooks, and Much More

Friday May 24, 2024 7:12 am PDT by
Best Buy today kicked off its Memorial Day weekend sale, and it has some of the best prices we've tracked in weeks on iPads and MacBooks. Specifically, you'll find record low prices on the 5th generation iPad Air, iPad mini 6, M2 MacBook Air, and M3 MacBook Pro. Note: MacRumors is an affiliate partner with Best Buy. When you click a link and make a purchase, we may receive a small payment,...
macOS 15 Feature

macOS 15 System Settings to Get Design Overhaul

Thursday May 23, 2024 12:51 pm PDT by
With the macOS 15 update that is set to debut at WWDC in June, Apple plans to rearrange "menus and app UIs," according to a report from AppleInsider. The System Settings app, which was last updated with macOS Ventura, will get one of the biggest updates. With macOS Ventura, Apple renamed the System Preferences app to System Settings, introducing a design similar to the Settings app on the...
6chatgpt mac app

5 Reasons to Use OpenAI's ChatGPT App for Mac

Thursday May 23, 2024 6:07 am PDT by
On May 13, OpenAI during its Spring Update announced that it would be releasing a desktop ChatGPT app for the Mac in the "coming weeks," and said that ahead of a wider launch it had started rolling out the app to some ChatGPT Plus subscribers. Subscribe to the MacRumors YouTube channel for more videos. After testing the app for a few days, we thought it was worth sharing some reasons why...
iOS 17

Apple Sheds More Light on iOS 17.5 Bug That Resurfaced Deleted Photos

Friday May 24, 2024 2:36 am PDT by
Last week, some iPhone users reported that Apple's iOS 17.5 update had introduced a bug that caused old photos that were deleted to reappear in the Photos app. Apple quickly released an iOS 17.5.1 update to fix the issue, but for many users, its explanation of "database corruption" in the release notes was all too brief, and did little to allay concerns about the privacy of their data. Apple ...

Top Rated Comments

Mac Fly (film) Avatar
5 weeks ago
To the detriment of the product, they will try to get rid of the volume buttons. They'll bring them back after three years of complaints, Stockholm syndrome style.
Score: 16 Votes (Like | Disagree)
DMG35 Avatar
5 weeks ago
So the big innovation this year is that they have added another button?

Lame.
Score: 11 Votes (Like | Disagree)
maerz001 Avatar
5 weeks ago
So looking forward for highly engineered buttons to increase price by $100
Score: 11 Votes (Like | Disagree)
vegetassj4 Avatar
5 weeks ago
It will be the most pro button they've ever created. We're going to love it.
Score: 11 Votes (Like | Disagree)
senttoschool Avatar
5 weeks ago
I wonder if the iPhone is going through the Touch Bar era of the Mac when Apple was trying to differentiate the Mac through gimmicks. Of course, the true innovation for Macs didn't arrive until Apple Silicon.

Make everything touch. Remove all physical buttons. Reduce tactile feel.
Score: 10 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Ctrlos Avatar
5 weeks ago

So the big innovation this year is that they have added another button?

Lame.
As customers we need to escape this idea that there needs to be meaningful innovations on an annual basis.

Although it’s stolen wholesale from Sony and Lumia devices a shutter button makes sense for the worlds most popular camera.
Score: 10 Votes (Like | Disagree)