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Apple is working on new touchless controls for its upcoming iPhones

08 April 2018

A new report by Bloomberg indicates that feature iPhones will ship with "touchless gesture controls" which would allow iPhone users to "perform some tasks by moving their finger close to the screen without actually tapping it".

In-house development teams at Apple are reportedly working on a new type of display technology - microLED - that could soon appear in some of the company's high-end wearables, such as the Apple Watch, as well other devices. But, apparently, Apple has taken a cue from there and chose to differentiate in the crowded marketplace with new designs and features that may be introduced in the upcoming iPhone. Samsung has also used touchless gestures in its handsets via its Air Gestures feature for years. However, the technology will take at least two years to get fully developed if Apple decides to take it up seriously, stated a person familiar with the company's plans. The touchless gesture control is something that's been implemented in Samsung phones already but Apple's design seems to work on a different principle entirely.

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The report, published Wednesday, says Apple is looking into these radical changes in order to differentiate in the crowded smartphone market.

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Bloomberg also notes Apple is working to curve the iPhone's display. The iPhone X's OLED screen curves slightly at the bottom, but the shape is mostly invisible to the human eye.

It's no secret that Apple isn't the first to offer many innovations. Instagram's not alone. Per 9 to 5 Mac, Slack, Whole Foods, eBay, Amazon, and Google Maps also no longer have stand-alone Apple Watch apps as Apple shifts to watchOS 2 and requires that apps be native to that OS. The OLED screen in iPhone X is from Samsung but Apple has expanded its sourcing to LG for displays.

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Apple is working on new touchless controls for its upcoming iPhones