Earlier on Monday we saw one sketchy rumor claim Apple was working on an iPhone without a physical Home button. Now a second report from AppleInsider has surfaced to back up those claims.
Citing a source who has proven reliable in the past, the Apple-focused blog notes that Cupertino really is working on this button-less iPhone. However, the device won’t actually arrive until at least 2017. For now it’s just a “long term goal” that could easily get scrapped.
The report notes that Apple might be able to ditch its Home button even sooner if it wasn’t for Touch ID. The company’s fingerprint reader needs to find a new home, and for now it’s unclear where it will go. According to earlier rumors, Cupertino is developing a new chip that would make it possible to embed a biometric sensor right into the touchscreen, but AppleInsider wasn’t able to confirm that detail.
If Apple can figure out a solution we might see a Home button-free iPhone in just a few short years. At best that likely means the technology would launch with the iPhone 7s (based on the company’s current naming sequence), though such a drastic change might call for an entirely new name. Maybe by then we’ll be ready to move on to a thinner and lighter iPhone Air without all those physical buttons weighing it down.