Sapphire home buttons rumored for new iPads; more fingerprint scanners?

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Apple seems to have a growing appreciation for synthetic sapphire as a material for use in portable electronics. Its affinity has expanded from just using the material for the iPhone 5’s camera covering to playing the role of the new home button for the iPhone 5S, concealing the TouchID fingerprint scanner. We’ve already heard that Apple might not want to go so far as to use full-on sapphire displays, having already experimented with the idea but ultimately passing, but we could very well see the material expand its presence in Apple’s lineup a little, as a new rumor suggests that sapphire will be returning as the home button material of choice when Apple introduces the iPad 5 and iPad mini 2.

While this source doesn’t directly address the possibility of sapphire home buttons on these new tablets being used as part of another fingerprint scanning system, that’s right where our suspicions head, especially considering the added cost of sapphire if not being used for some good, functional reason. Perhaps Apple’s also waiting to release those models until the yield rates for the scanner hardware improve.

Interestingly, the idea of Apple revisiting the idea of sapphire screens also comes back up in this report. It suggests such a feature on 2014 iPhones as being a possibility, but we wonder if that’s not just some wishful thinking.

Source: Digitimes
Via: MacRumors

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About The Author
Stephen Schenck
Stephen has been writing about electronics since 2008, which only serves to frustrate him that he waited so long to combine his love of gadgets and his degree in writing. In his spare time, he collects console and arcade game hardware, is a motorcycle enthusiast, and enjoys trapping blue crabs. Stephen's first mobile device was a 624 MHz Dell Axim X30, which he's convinced is still a viable platform. Stephen longs for a market where phones are sold independently of service, and bandwidth is cheap and plentiful; he's not holding his breath. In the meantime, he devours smartphone news and tries to sort out the juicy bitsRead more about Stephen Schenck!