Published in Mobiles

Apple 3D Touch slowly abandoned

by on14 September 2018

Waste of engineering skills

One of the unusual things that the Tame Apple Press has not noticed about the new iPhone Range is that Jobs’ Mob appears to have lost interest in its 3D touch tech.

Apple introduced 3D Touch for the iPhone 6s and 6s Plus, a pressure-sensitive feature that uses capacitive sensors integrated into the smartphone's display to sense three degrees of pressure in a user's touch and respond differently based on the amount of pressure exerted.

Of course, it was touted at the time as ground breaking, super and cool and a new way for users to interact with their phone, other than just switching it onto vibrate and stuffing it down their front trouser pockets.

While both the new iPhone XS and XS Max include 3D Touch, Apple has chosen not to include the feature on the iPhone XR.

Sure this is the cheap and cheerful phone and its absence could be explained by the fact Apple had to strip out some features, but 3D Touch has been included on iPhones in that price range.

Indeed, Apple is replacing 3D Touch with Haptic Touch, which will make a click when you activate a button's secondary feature by pressing and holding it.

However, the change shows how much of a chocolate teapot 3D Touch has become. It is nothing more than a fancy long press, and other phones do it much better, and Apple finds that the hardware which is required to do it difficult to make.

It has been an issue which has been brewing since 2015. Apple's marketing leader, Phil Schiller warned it would waste a whole year of engineering at a tremendous amount of cost and investment in manufacturing if it doesn't do something that people are going to use.

“If it's just a demo feature and a month later nobody is using it, this is a huge waste of engineering talent."

It looks like Apple has reached that pain threshold. It is not the only technology which has proved an embarrassment for Jobs’ Mob.

A year after unveiling the AirPower all-in-one wireless charger for the iPhone, Apple Watch and AirPods, Apple has now erased all references to AirPower from its website. The company has yet to ship it.

It seems like the product was vaporware and that the promise of an all-in-one charger has died.


Last modified on 14 September 2018
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