After the thinnest iPad, Apple was revealed to be developing an ultra-thin iPhone

In the latest Power On newsletter, Bloomberg's Mark Gurman said that Apple is working hard to produce a "significantly thinner" iPhone 17 and is committed to making the iPhone a thinner and lighter phone.

This isn't the first time we've heard that Apple is working on making the iPhone 17 slimmer. In October this year, analyst Ming-Chi Kuo predicted that Apple would adopt new motherboard technology that is thinner and lighter.

In addition to the iPhone, Gurman also said that Apple is also working hard to "slim down" the MacBook Pro and Apple Watch, and plans to make the latest iPad the thinnest and lightest device in its category.

Once upon a time, thinness and lightness were the vane of mobile phone trends. Various mobile phone manufacturers have been pushing the limits of "the world's thinnest mobile phone".

Gionee, which was in the spotlight at the time, successfully reduced the thickness of smartphones to 5 mm. Gionee ELIFE S5.1 appeared, bringing an ultra-thin body of 5.15 mm, once claiming the title of the world's thinnest smartphone.

Vivo was not to be outdone in this competition and soon launched the X5 Max. The body thickness of this phone is 4.75mm, which is only the thickness of two and a half one-yuan coins.

vivo X5 Max has set a new record as the world’s thinnest smartphone. More than ten years have passed since its release, and the world record it holds has yet to be broken.

The phrase "ahead of the times, unprecedented" for the iPhone 5S is a classic memory for many people. The weight of 112 grams it brings is almost impossible to reproduce on current smartphones.

But at some point, the trend of thin and light products gradually became "gloomy", and the same is true for Apple.

On June 27, 2019, Apple released an official statement on its official website, announcing the resignation of chief design officer Jony Ive. The design trends of Apple products have also begun to gradually change.

Since the release of the iPhone 12 in 2020, Apple has often been criticized for making only minor changes to the iPhone's design each year. Eve Jobs, the daughter of Steve Jobs, also posted on Instagram, teasing that the design of iPhone 14 is almost the same as iPhone 13.

iPhone 7 seems to be the "last hurray" for Apple's design team on mobile phones.

The glossy black iPhone 7 brings a seamless look and feel through exquisite craftsmanship, becoming the pinnacle of iPhone history. However, the premise is that you do not use it frequently.

From then on, the iPhone was no longer focused on thinness and lightness, and the iPad Air was no longer "Air".

Mobile devices such as mobile phones and tablets are becoming more and more important in daily life, and so is their practicality. Big battery, big screen, etc., everything needs to be compromised in design and feel.

Therefore, various brands are crazily piling up materials to create as perfect a "bucket-shaped" mobile phone as possible. However, mobile phones are still used in the hands after all, and the experience perceived through the hands, such as feel, thickness and weight, is slowly being "ignored".

A long time ago, "asking for half a catty" was just a meme in the mobile phone circle. But looking around now, with the emergence of folding screens and various stacking models, the thickness of many flagship phones has begun to approach 9mm, and weights of more than 200 grams have become the norm.

When the entire smartphone industry is completely trapped in the vortex of hardware competition and AI competition, Apple is now trying to break out and has dropped its anchor in another calm port, which is the return to thinness.

The new iPad Pro is as thin as 5.1 mm and only two Type-C interfaces thick, making it Apple’s thinnest product ever.

In an exclusive interview with iFan'er with the iPad team, Molly Anderson from Apple's industrial design team told iFan'er that the original design intention of the iPad has never changed for more than ten years:

Our goal has always been to create a magical piece of glass, like a piece of "digital paper." The paper should be as thin and light as possible so that when you are creating, you will not realize that it is a "product".

Thankfully, technology now allows us to rediscover the balance between beauty and functionality. In an interview with iFan'er, Steve Lemay from Apple's human-computer interaction team mentioned: "The iPad Pro can move closer to its original intention step by step. Behind it is Apple's core advantage, which is that it is good at cross-disciplinary and cross-department cooperation."

On the surface, the core factor in the thinning of the 2024 iPad Pro is the replacement of an OLED display. The self-luminous nature of OLED allows it to take up less space than an LCD screen that requires a layer of backlight.

But changing the screen is not simple. In order to ensure a screen brightness comparable to Mini-LED, Apple did not use a traditional OLED screen, but redesigned a double-layer series OLED screen and customized it from suppliers.

Batteries with higher energy density, slimmer display panels, and the upcoming elimination of physical buttons… Innovations in all aspects have paved the way for thinner and lighter bodies in the future.

This is why Apple will launch thinner iPhones and MacBooks after releasing the new iPad Pro.

Although thinness and lightness are no longer the mainstream trend nowadays, after seeing that every flagship phone is made into a "brick", we will still miss the small-screen mobile phones and thin and light mobile phones of the past.

We like this kind of innovation and want to see this kind of innovation. I hope this can bring a different sense of freshness to today's "boring" mobile phone market.

Apple published "Designed by Apple in California" in 2016, which records Apple's product design from 1998 to 2016. In the introduction to the book, Jony Ive says:

I'm convinced that humans perceive care in the same way that we perceive carelessness, and I think that what we perceive – perhaps not consciously – goes far beyond the object itself; The people behind it do more than just make something work. They genuinely care about the details that are too small to be seen, as well as the big ideas and overarching features.

Topics such as thinness and feel are difficult to arouse public discussion. They cannot use exaggerated functions and technologies to attract people's attention. But after all the functionalities of mobile phones are compared, these interactive experience designs that are directly related to people will undoubtedly be an important point of contention for flagship mobile phones.

Of course, this does not mean that the performance should be reduced, but that it should be light in weight and feel good on the premise of excellent performance. This is also the next round of new tests for each manufacturer.

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