avatarby Scott Adam GordonFebruary 16, 20170 comments

Following recent reports that the iPhone 8 could cost as much as $1,000, a similarly significant rumor indicates that Apple will remove the home button in favor of a “function area.”

This function area was first seen in a leaked image from KGI analyst Ming-Chi Kuo (above) situated at the bottom of the handset. As to what the function area will do is currently anyone’s guess, though Apple Insider, who broke the story, suggests it will feature multiple virtual buttons — possibly like the capacitive buttons found on Samsung’s Galaxy series — and may also integrate fingerprint scanning tech.

The 2016 MacBook Pro also integrates a fingerprint sensor into its Touch Bar, but it’s been hinted that Apple could make use of a 3D laser scanning module which would be able to offer facial recognition in addition to fingerprint scanning. Further, it’s said that the area could be used to display controls for games or when watching videos.

Reports that Apple would remove the home button have been doing the rounds since last year but we now seem to be getting closer to understanding how it would all work. Still, there’s going to be lots more to learn in the run-up to the iPhone 8 release expected in September.

What are your thoughts on the function area? Let us know in the comments.