Apple is getting rid of the home button on next year’s iPad


8, 2017

Apple is getting ready to bring all the big new features of the iPhone X to the iPad next year. Bloomberg reports that Cupertino is working on a new iPad, expected to be released as early as late 2018.

The company’s upcoming iPad will come with slimmer bezels like the iPhone X, and that means Apple will have to get rid of the home button and Touch ID from its tablet. To replace Touch ID, Apple will introduce the same Face ID technology powered by the new TrueDepth camera on the iPad. Users would be able to unlock their device, and purchase products from the App Store. The new TrueDepth camera will also bring iPhone X’s blockbuster Animoji feature to the iPad, which allows users to make animated emojis using their facial expressions.

The improved, bezel-less iPad won’t come with OLED panels like the iPhone X, however. Bloomberg says that the majority of display suppliers don’t have the ability to make OLED panels for the iPad, with only Samsung Display being the exception. Samsung is already making the OLED displays for the iPhone X, and the company also makes the OLED displays for its Galaxy tablets and the Windows 10-powered Galaxy Book convertible. But due to the technical constraints with OLED display production at mass scale could be the main reason behind Apple sticking with the current display panels.

Lack of the home button on the iPhone X hasn’t been a big deal for many users, but getting rid of the home button on the iPad could lead to some UX problems — especially with all the multitasking gestures on iOS 11 that already make the iPad confusing to use in some cases.

Image by AP Photo/Marcio Jose Sanchez

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