Patently Apple posted a granted patent report back in August 2016 titled "Apple Granted a Patent for a Curved Glass iPhone with Active Sidewall Virtual Buttons." Today Apple's continuation patent was published regarding this invention. Being a continuation patent, the question becomes what are they continuing or adding to the invention they already own?
In 2016 Apple's patent claims focused primarily on the flexible display that would be use on this possible future iPhone. In Apple continuation patent published by the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office today we see that Apple focuses in on the side glass being able to detect a finger press and more importantly a "force measurement." Elsewhere they refer to it as a force sensor.
The new claims also point to a vibrator haptic effect and an "audio output in response to the force measurement.
Apple's patent application was filed back in Q4 2017. Considering that this is a patent application, the timing of such a product to market is unknown at this time.
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