Three finger drag gesture via new MacBook Pro’s trackpad acting up for some users

By Christian Zibreg on Nov 18, 2016

Three finger drag, a productivity-boosting multi-touch trackpad gesture in macOS, isn’t working properly for some owners of Apple’s new MacBook Pro. Both 13 and 15-inch MacBook Pros have larger trackpads than their predecessors, but for many people the gesture doesn’t work at all.

For others, three finger drag works only intermittently or performs erroneously when used in one of the sides of the new MacBook Pro’s Force Touch trackpad. Read More


Apple launches worldwide “Touch Disease” repair program for iPhone 6 Plus

By Christian Zibreg on Nov 18, 2016

Apple has finally acknowledged existence of so-called “Touch Disease” following a class action lawsuit regarding the issue. The problem has been plaguing a subset of iPhone 6 Plus owners for quite some time now, manifesting itself in the form of a flickering bar at the top of the display and general multi-touch unresponsiveness.

The firm denied responsibility because under the terms of a new worldwide program it’s agreed to fix any affected iPhone 6 Plus devices, but for a $149 service fee. Read More


iOS 10 tidbit: “Slide to unlock” is gone, say hello to “Press home to unlock”

By Christian Zibreg on Jun 15, 2016

The iPhone’s familiar slide-to-unlock gesture was subjected to multiple lawsuits, but the feature itself has barely changed since the handset’s inception nearly a decade ago.

With iOS 10, however, Apple has made some plenty significant changes to the Lock screen while introducing a brand new way to get into your phone. Read More


Disabling natural scrolling on your Mac’s multi-touch trackpad

By Anthony Bouchard on Feb 22, 2016

All of Apple’s MacBooks come equipped with a multi-touch trackpad that recognizes a two-finger scroll up/down gesture. Apple’s iMac, Mac Pro, and Mac Mini can also be paired with any generation of Apple’s Bluetooth Magic Trackpad or Magic Mouse to provide a similar multi-touch experience.

You probably use this gesture a lot throughout OS X while you’re browsing websites or writing up long documents since clicking and dragging is so 1990’s and tap/multi-touch gestures are more commonly used on modern multi-touch trackpads.

If you’re an ex-Windows user, or still use Windows, then you’re probably used to the content on the page scrolling in the same direction as your fingers move on the trackpad, but on the Mac it’s quite the opposite by default. Fortunately, it’s easy to change the scroll direction of your trackpad, and in this tutorial, we’re going to show you how it’s done. Read More


Apple patents technology that would allow iPhones to detect touches while wearing gloves

By Christian Zibreg on Nov 26, 2015

Did you know that your iPhone’s multi-touch display cannot detect touches while you’re wearing gloves? That’s because the iPhone uses capacitive touchscreen technology that takes human body capacitance as input and gloves block your fingers from touching the screen directly.

A new patent application Apple filed for with the United States Patent & Trademark Office (USPTO) in the summer of 2014 was published this morning.

Titled “Glove Touch Detection”, it seeks to fix this problem via dynamically adjusted threshold values, which would permit the touchscreen to register touch events while the user is wearing regular gloves. Read More


iOS 9 introduces predictive touch technology that should be crucial for rumored Apple stylus

By Christian Zibreg on Jun 15, 2015

Coincidentally or not, iOS 9 has introduced a trio of notable enhancements in the multi-touch department that could be viewed as laying the groundwork for a rumored Apple-branded stylus thought to arrive later this year alongside a larger twelve-something-inch ‘iPad Pro’ model.

As one of the WWDC 2015 session videos details, the Cocoa Touch framework in iOS 9 has gained brand new predictive touch capabilities. Not only that, but iOS 9 now has a drawing engine and features vastly improved multi-touch performance, a significant boon for apps that let you draw with your finger or a stylus. Read More


Apple researching hover touch sensing and embedded heart rate monitoring

By Christian Zibreg on Dec 24, 2013

A pair of patent applications filed with the United States Patent & Trademark Office earlier in the week have hinted that Apple’s iPhone could gain a new sensor letting the smartphone detect your cardiac signal when it’s picked up. The invention would permit your iPhone to identify you by your heartbeat.

Furthermore, the company appears to be researching hover sensing technology like that found on Samsung’s Galaxy S4, which is capable of detecting touch events even when a user’s finger is not really in contact with the touchscreen… Read More


Apple working on multitouch gestures for iOS keyboard, patent hints

By Ed Sutherland on Sep 27, 2013

Although Apple’s iOS is known for its gesture-based interface, the iPhone maker is notoriously hesitant about enhancing the virtual keyboard feature. A patent granted Tuesday reveals the company has been considering adopting multitouch keyboard from the moment the iPhone appeared. The patent filing entitled ‘Swipe gestures for touch screen keyboards’ outlines gestures to handle common keyboard tasks, such as deletion, punctuation and more… Read More


Apple updates touch tech in upcoming iPads

By Christian Zibreg on Jul 24, 2013

DigiTimes in January wrote Apple’s fifth-generation iPad could adopt the iPad mini’s thin-film touchscreen technology called GF Ditto, also better known as GF2. NPD DisplaySearch is well-versed in all things concerning mobile screens and yesterday they corroborated the rumor.

Specifically, DisplaySearch notes Apple’s shift toward in-cell display tech for the iPhone 5 and GF2 for the upcoming iPads has resulted in major shifts in the touch-panel industry supply chain. Basically a double-sided ITO film, GF2 has allowed Apple to make the iPad mini much thinner and significantly lighter compared to the bulkier G/G touchscreen tech driving the iPad 3.

As the iPad 5 is widely expected to adopt the iPad mini’s thin and light appearance, obviously a major part of that will be Apple’s adoption of the advanced GF2 technology… Read More


New Apple patents granted, covering multitouch, iPhone 5 and Lightning

By Ed Sutherland on Jun 18, 2013

Among the nearly 40 Apple patents granted today by the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) are ones covering multi-touch technology, as well as designs for the iPhone 5 and the Lightning connector. The widest-ranging group of patents involves the multi-touch technology for the iPhone 5 and latest iPads and iPods.

Meanwhile, Apple’s Senior Vice President of Design, Jonathan Ive, is given lead credit for designing the iPhone 5… Read More


The online Apple Store, now with iOS touch-friendly navigation

By Christian Zibreg on Apr 5, 2013

Apple’s online store has over time implemented a bunch of tweaks aimed at improving navigation and browsing product pages on Apple’s mobile devices like the iPhone and iPad.

For instance, I’ve always liked the ability to swipe through teaser images on landing pages for specific products.

Here’s an example: fire up Safari on your iPhone or iPad, visit and swipe through those big, beautiful product shots at the top. But the company isn’t stopping there.

Having recently hired dozens of engineers, visual designers and web developers, Apple has now introduced a fresh set of tweaks to the online Apple Store, including the touch-friendly navigation bar which appears right below the main product sections (iPod, iPad etc.)… Read More


Apple envisions multitouch gestures on blank screens

By Ed Sutherland on Mar 26, 2013

Apple Tuesday was granted an intriguing multitouch patent with a wrinkle: no screen display necessary. Instead of glancing down at your iPod during a workout to adjust the volume or skip past an annoying track, you simply touch the screen. The patent, first filed in 2009, opens up a number of potential benefits, including extending battery life.

Rather than your iPod nano’s screen displaying controls such as sliders, Apple envisions devices accepting multitouch user input even when a screen itself is blank. Not only would this open the potential for eliminating hardware controls, but the technology may also become part of everyday devices ranging from your iPhone, iWatch or even iGlasses, should Apple decide to compete with Google… Read More


Microsoft and Samsung try to patent Apple’s already patented pinch-zooming

By Christian Zibreg on Mar 10, 2013

In a ‘how low can they go’ moment, both software giant Microsoft and the South Korean conglomerate Samsung have moved to patent the pinch-zoom concept that Apple popularized (and patented) on mobile devices with the introduction of the iPhone six years ago, as if Apple’s technology never existed.

Apple’s late co-founder Steve Jobs reportedly hit the roof after HTC in early 2010 launched a handset with pinch-to-zoom functionality, but the two companies recently settled their patent disputes. On the strength of its iPhone patent portfolio, Apple even forced Google to agree to disabling multitouch on early Android devices sold outside the United States.

Now, Apple claims a specific software implementation that’s different than that Google used in Jelly Bean, Android version 4.2. Be that as it may, it’s funny both Microsoft and Samsung patent filings now suggest pinch zooming was their invention… Read More


Apple wins 26 patents, including multitouch and more

By Ed Sutherland on Jan 22, 2013

Apple was granted more than two dozen patents today, including technology for multitouch sensors dating back to 2007, when the original iPhone debuted. Also approved by the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office: Apple patents covering the iOS magnifying loupe, noise-cancellation and even product packaging.

The multitouch patent, which covers the layout of screen sensors in the first iPhone, as well as future touch devices, follows a broad patent granted earlier this year covering a wide range of potential uses for multitouch, including aircraft instruments. For some time, Apple and its chief rival Samsung have fought over patents, culminating in a $1 billion victory for Apple, which charged the South Korean company infringed upon technology owned by the iPhone maker… Read More


USPTO preliminary invalidates key Steve Jobs iPhone patent

By Christian Zibreg on Dec 7, 2012

The ultimate smartphone patent which covers the intricacies of the iPhone’s touch screen heuristics has been preliminary invalidated by the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO), reveals the FOSS Patents blog which covers intellectual property and litigation in the technology industry.

That’s bad news as USPTO in October also invalidated the famous rubber banding patent, Apple’s other prized iPhone invention. Now, all is not lost because many patent claims that are rejected at the early stage do ultimately survive, though the prospect of loosing the iconic multitouch patent is without any doubt a major concern for Apple, even with plenty of other multitouch-related patents the company now holds… Read More


Apple researching facial-zooming and quieter iPhone vibration

By Ed Sutherland on Nov 15, 2012

Apple has applied to patent new technology designed to solve two annoying problems. One filing addresses that “silent” iPhone which you set to “vibrate” but instead noisily dances across tables and other hard surfaces. The other patent application could come in handy for iPhone and iPad mini owners constantly resizing their screens for a better view. However, the most intriguing invention Apple seeks to patent measures the distance of an iDevice owner’s face from a screen, using a combination of the camera or other proximity sensor. Differing modes would then automatically adjust the size of content being viewed… Read More


Dutch court rules Samsung did not violate Apple’s prized multitouch gesture patents

By Christian Zibreg on Oct 24, 2012

A court in The Netherlands let Samsung off the hook, ruling that some of the South Korean conglomerate’s many Galaxy smartphones and tablets did not infringe upon Apple’s prized patents related to multitouch gestures on iPhones and iPads. As you know, Apple took Samsung and other handset makers to court, arguing they copied the zoom to pinch feature and other multi-finger gestures on iOS devices.

This ruling alone won’t help Samsung evade the $1+ billion payout from a massive loss in the Apple vs. Samsung mega-suit in the United States. The U.S International Trade Commission is set to determine on Thursday whether Samsung really infringed on Apple’s patents… Read More


How Apple planned for the iPad mini with improved Multi-Touch in iOS 6

By Jeff Benjamin on Oct 23, 2012

It’s always good to think two or three steps ahead to prepare for any situation, and that’s obviously what Apple’s been doing when it comes to the iPad mini, and iOS 6.

As we told you about earlier, improvements needed to be added to iOS’ Multi-Touch in order to accommodate the smaller bezel of the iPad mini. With the mini, you no longer have the luxury of a half-inch bezel wrapping around the screen like the bigger iPad models.

That means that fingers and thumbs will now rest on the actual screen of the device instead of the bezel, and this would in turn result in a litany of false positive finger inputs. If the iPad mini shipped with iOS 5, such an issue would be a major problem.

Fortunately, as iPhoneinCanada points out, Apple planned well ahead in advance for such a scenario. As it turns out, the iPhone and iPod touch versions of iOS 6 shipped with improved Multi-Touch out of the gate. Take a look inside as we compare iOS 5’s Multi-Touch detection, with the improved and iPad mini ready iOS 6. Read More


The iPad mini’s skinnier side bezels had Apple refine multitouch

By Christian Zibreg on Oct 23, 2012

The iPad mini’s 7.9-inch display is packed inside what The Verge’s Joshua Topolsky deemed “an incredibly thin and light design”. Part of that design: the skinnier side bezels that we first caught a glimpse of in early mockups. The problem is, there’s no way your thumb could rest on the side bezels without touching the display.

Enter Apple’s multitouch expertise. When Steve Jobs was unveiling the iPhone in January 2007, he praised its multitouch user interface for being able to detect and ignore unintended taps and swipes. “It’s super smart”, he quipped.

It’s all done in iOS and Apple had to refine its multitouch software so the iPad mini can automatically figure out when your thumb is simply resting on the display instead of interacting with the gizmo… Read More


Samsung and Apple duke it out over whose multitouch is better

By Christian Zibreg on Sep 7, 2012

The Apple v. Samsung mega-suit may be behind us, but the legal spat between the two frenemies is far from over. Both companies are embroiled in complicated litigation spread across ten countries the world over. In a Hague, Netherlands court, for example, Samsung locked horns with Apple over who copied who concerning multitouch technology.

Samsung resorted to some interesting tactics there, claiming that its multitouch implementation is less capable than Apple’s in an effort to prove it didn’t breach any of Apple’s many patents related to multitouch… Read More

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