The invite to tomorrow’s Apple event where the company is expected to show off the latest incarnation of the iPad has got the rumour mill flowing about the device “you really have to see. And touch”. But will Apple really be introducing a “haptic display” as proposed by The Guardian, which would allow the display to feel rough, ridged, or rounded to the user?
There is little doubt that some of the major changes made for the upcoming iPad 3 (or iPad HD as some are calling it) are with the display. It is widely believed that it is going to feature a “retina display” with a similar pixel density to the iPhone 4 and 4S – something only ASUS is trying to match with its upcoming Transformer 3. These beautiful high definition screens have now hit a price-point for the larger screen sizes to make this a possibility.
Another possible change to the display would be the introduction of Corning’s Gorilla Glass 2, which offers the same strength but shaving off 20% of the thickness. The first products making use of this technology are expected for release in the next couple of months, so Apple could be leading the pack here. They could also be making use of the material on the back of the tablet as well as on the front, giving the device the same double glossy sides of the iPhone 4 and 4S.
A third possibility would be the removal of the physical button in the design of the device, a button that has remained consistently on Apple’s iPhones and iPads since the first iPhone was unveiled back in 2007. Is it time that the iPad went touch only? The invite doesn’t show a button and maybe that’s a sign that Apple has finally deemed it unnecessary – making it stand out from many of its copycat competitors.
All of these are more likely than Apple releasing an iPad with a “haptic display”, as unlike a variety of technologies that Apple could be adding to its flagship tablet such as NFC, or a pico projector – there really is little desire for a surface that can simply feel rough or smooth dependent on what the user is doing. It isn’t out of the realms of possibility, as Apple does like to show itself to be leading the pack, but with such limited benefits I doubt Apple would have highlighted the technology in its invite – if anything it would be “one more thing”.
If this has got you curious about what else Apple has in store for us tomorrow, then take a look at our iPad 3 rumour round up. But whatever they are announcing – we’ll find out in a few hours.