January 19, 2011
Apple always shares upcoming versions of iOS with members of its developer program so they can beta test it before it goes public. Well, these often contain clues as to what's coming up from Apple, and the latest one released last week is no different. On top of a possibly higher resolution screen, and a built-in vibration, the next iPad may be packing a proximity sensor. This according to some code found by a Portuguese Web site. Yes, it's the exact same type of sensor that you can already find at the top of your iPhone. All it does is turn off the screen and the multitouch when you hold your phone against your face during a call. So why would Apple include such a thing in the iPad? Well, clearly, it's not to allow you to place calls while holding your iPad against your greasy cheeks. Apparently, the proximity sensor will allow your iPad to become a bit more self-aware when held. What this means is that your next iPad will be able to automatically lock itself when you close its case to protect the screen, and unlock on its own when you open it. Sure, it's nothing revolutionary. Yet, this is the kind of neat little detail that makes an Apple product an Apple product.