The technology 3D Touch uses an additional layer of 96 pressure sensors that recognize when you press on the display and simulate pressing by vibrating the built-in taptic engine.
The new patent Apple states that the company is working on a new generation 3D Touch with vibration feedback.
On Thursday, the US Patent and Trademark Office released another application titled Dynamically Stabilized Magnetic Array. The application says about a system 3D Touch that will use electric and conventional magnets built into the display.
The pressure applied to the display cover will interact with the two magnets, which in turn will provide a vibration feedback. By controlling the amount of current in the electromagnetic system, Apple will be able to change the degree of recoil.
The system will recognize and respond differently to how hard you tap the screen. If the oscillation exceeds a threshold value, current is transferred to the electromagnet, resulting in a tactile response.
This will be especially useful for keyboards, virtual piano applications, and more.Here is an interesting excerpt from the patent application Apple:
The device can display piano keys. The piano has two types of keys – white and black.
Black keys stick out above the surface, while white keys are visible only visually. Thus, pressing different keys feels different.
The interaction of magnets with electromagnets can be stronger or weaker, depending on the three-dimensional figures exerting pressure on the device. The illustration shows a piano interface, but the technology can be used for both virtual drums and standard keyboards.
It is not yet clear whether the new technology will use a taptic engine, which can already create vibration, or whether it will be replaced with something.
The patent first appeared in June by engineer James Stryker.