For some reason, Apple seems interested in creating curved iPhone screens on future models. But is this ‘cool’ technology something we’d actually want?
Multiple sources are reporting that Apple is working on two interesting features: curved iPhone screens and touchless gestures.
The touchless gestures feature would allow users to perform some tasks by moving their finger close to the screen without actually tapping it, Bloomberg reports. I can actually see some benefit to this.
A user could shut off an alarm, for example, with a wave rather than pressing a specific area of the screen. You could acknowledge an alert faster if you could just make a quick gesture above the phone.
That one has promise, I think.
Do we really need curved iPhone screens?
No. No, we don’t.
Some models of phones have screens that curve around corners and display information on the side of the unit. I can see a slight bit of appeal in this.
Those of us who wouldn’t consider not keeping a pricey glass phone safe and secure in an Otterbox case would have a hard time seeing the benefit of that curve.
Apple’s design, however, isn’t that kind of curve. They’re trying to develop, apparently, a screen that gradually curves inward from top to bottom.
Think about that for a minute. Most of us keep our phone in our front pocket. If you’re going to do a curve at all, the most logical one would be that curves inward from side to side since it would better match the anatomical curve of one’s leg. An inward curve from top to bottom would make that phone even more awkward in one’s pocket.
And what does it accomplish from a usability standpoint?
A smartphone that curves inward — from top to bottom or side to side — is almost certainly going to have a taller profile. That goes against everyone’s obsession with thinner phones.
A smartphone that curves inward will also likely make it harder to protect the screen. One of the most popular methods of protecting a screen now is the use of a thin sheet of tempered glass which is supposed to absorb a shock that might damage a screen. It’s supposed to shatter so that the screen it’s protecting won’t. Can that same sheet of tempered glass bend as well?
I’d be surprised.
Maybe it’s time we stop trying to make things fancy and work on what’s under the hood.