Gone are the days when smartphone displays were measured in resolution alone. Apple's annual iPhone launch event will take place later today, and the Cupertino giant is debuting a display that will not only boast an impressive resolution, but which will also act like your mouse, cursor and trackpad working together. And it is called Force Touch.
Introduced at Apple's Worldwide Developer Conference earlier this year when iOS 9 was launched, this will be the first time that Force Touch will adorn an iPhone. It is already in place in the Apple Watch and the recently launched MacBook.
Force Touch works on pressure-based stimuli. Once you buy the iPhone 6s or the 6s Plus, you'll find your display responding differently to taps, light press and long press by your fingers. Apple's native apps like Maps, Music and Safari as well as third party apps optimised for iOS 9 will behave accordingly.
For example, if you're using the Maps app, once you press lightly over an area, the app will highlight it and once you press harder, the app will show directions to the area.
Similarly, while watching videos, you can light press the screen to scroll through them or long press to scroll faster. Long pressing on a track in your Music app can also give you an option to add it to an existing playlist.
According to 9to5Mac, "Force Touch will be integrated into Maps to drop new pins, into media players for pressure-sensitive scrolling, into the Calendar for adding new events, and across the system for quickly looking up word definitions."
Ultimately, Apple's intention behind Force Touch is to let you perform pressure-sensitive scrolling through the home button that will perform similar to the trackpad in the MacBook.
Earlier, DigiTimes, a Taiwanese newsletter known to have deep-rooted sources within firms that manufacture Apple products, speculated that the next iPhones might not feature the home button at all. The newsletter said that the home button might be replaced by a complete touchscreen display with Apple's patented Force Touch technology, and that the new display will reportedly field integrated fingerprint sensors which will protect the iPhone's security as well.
However, at the launch event, Apple unveiled the new 3D tough feature in the iPhone 6s and 6s plus. The new 3D touch technology works with in-built apps like messages, mail, Maps, Music and can take actions within apps even without opening the apps. With functionalities like opening mails, sending them to trash folders, swipe across messages and even apps and changing app settings right from the desktop, 3D Touch seems like the most revolutionary feature coming with the iPhone 6s and 6s Plus.