Apple iPhone 15 Pro gets regular buttons after all

For a long time, it seemed that Apple would reinvent the button. The iPhone 15 Pro would get solid-state buttons, not real but simulated ones. However, the technology seems to come too soon; Apple won't be able to bring this to market in 2023.

Apple is good at reinventing the wheel. Creating new solutions for things we take for granted. This brought us Retina displays, MagSafe, and virtual buttons like those on the iPhone 7. The latter looks like an actual button, but you can't press it. Through haptic vibrations, however, it does behave like a button.

Apple iPhone 15 Pro render made by 9to5Mac
This is what the iPhone 15 Pro looks like

For the iPhone 15 Pro and 15 Pro Max, Apple planned to make the volume rockers look precisely like this. That rumor arose when a supplier that makes this technology possible hinted at a new major customer. Now that same supplier, Cirrus Logic, reports to its shareholders that the deal is off.

Guessing the reason

The iPhone 15 Pro and iPhone 15 Pro Max lend themselves well for new technologies. Why Apple does not pursue the plan to apply haptic buttons is anyone's guess. A hardware- or software-related problem seems out of the question. After all, the technique has been around since 2016 when Apple introduced the iPhone 7.

Apple iPhone 7 Taptic Engine shown during tear down from iFixit
The Taptic Engine on the iPhone 7 simulates pressing the home button

We now wonder aloud what new features the Pro and Max will be equipped with instead. After all, there should be enough differentiation from the regular iPhone 15. A new look, which is being rumored, will be insufficient in our eyes. Those who still set their sights on solid-state buttons must wait until 2024, when a new attempt will follow.

Photo: iFixit and 9to5Mac

Mentioned products

Join the discussion