Having added a multitouch capable touchscreen display to the latest generation iPod Nano, Apple looks set to remove the device’s screen entirely as a new patent reveals plans for a gesture controlled, touch-sensitive case.
Despite using a Nano in its included patent illustrations, the company’s trademark registrations pose claims of a touch-responsive shell to be adopted by devices for future iterations. Such patents are not a new development, however, with Apple filing trademarks on similar technologies as early as 2007.
The latest patent filings would see users able to control music play and track selection on a screen-less device such as the iPod Shuffle with simple gestures representing a variety of commands. According to the Apple patent, a single tap on the responsive casing would play or pause music whilst a double tap would skip playlists forward one track.
Other finger motion controls for the mooted product shells would see a triple tap skip back a single track and a clockwise or counter-clockwise circular motion increasing or decreasing the playback volume respectively. It has yet to be revealed when Apple expects any such technologies to appear on consumer products.
Could touch-sensitive cases find a way to replace touchscreens on certain devices? Share your thoughts via the T3 Twitter and Facebook feeds and stay tuned to T3.com for all the latest from the Apple camp.
Posted by Luke Johnson