White iPhone video may show scrapped Exposé interface for iOS multitasking

Posted:
in iPhone edited January 2014
A new video of a white iPhone 4 claimed to be running a "test" build of iOS shows an Exposé-style multitasking interface, one that was originally planned for inclusion in iOS 4 but was ultimately scrapped.



Last March, AppleInsider was first to report that Apple would add multitasking support to iOS 4 with an interface much like Exposé on the Mac OS X operating system. In April, Apple did announce iOS 4 with multitasking, but task management was instead accomplished with a multitasking tray at the bottom of the screen more akin to the Mac's Dashboard interface.



People familiar with the matter later informed AppleInsider that while early builds of iOS 4.0 implemented the aforementioned Exposé-like interface, Apple in the weeks leading up to the software's introduction felt the experience of the feature wasn't up to snuff, and ordered it to be redesigned into its current form.



Now, on Tuesday, a new video claiming to show a "test version" of iOS was spotted by Engadget. The video shows an Exposé-like multitasking interface that gives a visual representation of open applications when switching between them.



Based on information from people familiar with Apple's software development, AppleInsider believes the software shown in the new videos may be an older version of iOS 4 never before seen in public. To support this, the video also shows the Voice Memos application with an older version of the application's icon, rather than the current blue representation.



Adding even more credibility to the authenticity of the video is its source: Vietnamese site Tinhte.vn. The same site has been the source of legitimate leaks in the past, obtaining a 13-inch MacBook last May before it was unveiled, as well as an iPhone 4 prototype.







The latest videos show a white iPhone 4, a device that has yet to be released, but is expected to arrive in the coming weeks. But the hardware in the videos is a prototype device, sporting 64GB of internal storage capacity.



The included version of iOS also has a slightly different interface when creating and naming folders in iOS 4. A quick scroll through the native Settings application also shows Facebook integration included with the mobile operating system.







The Exposé multitasking menu also includes a search bar at the top of the screen. On the current build of iOS, Spotlight search is invoked by scrolling the home screen to the left.



Aside from those minor tweaks and additional features, the software on the alleged prototype device looks largely the same as the iOS 4 that is currently available for the iPhone, iPad and iPod touch. Apple is expected to show off the next major update to its mobile operating system, iOS 5, at this year's Worldwide Developers Conference, scheduled for June 6 through June 10 in San Francisco, Calif.
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Comments

  • Reply 1 of 140
    In the second video at 1:18 I believe you can see "Springboard" listed.
  • Reply 2 of 140
    Much better than the current multi-tasking dock but the mechanism to close apps is messy. Why not just support the WebOS implementation of flicking them off the top of the screen which is much more intuitive. Same can be said of the stackable cards in place of Exposé. Apple should just bite the bullet and copy Palm like RIM did, it is great GUI design.
  • Reply 3 of 140
    MacProMacPro Posts: 18,260member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by KaptainK View Post


    Much better than the current multi-tasking dock but the mechanism to close apps is messy. Why not just support the WebOS implementation of flicking them off the top of the screen which is much more intuitive. Same can be said of the stackable cards in place of Exposé. Apple should just bite the bullet and copy Palm like RIM did, it is great GUI design.



    Perhaps that might mess up law suits Apple is planning against look and feel copycats.
  • Reply 4 of 140
    nobodyynobodyy Posts: 377member
    NOOOOOOO.

    Sucks we missed out on that. Much better than the tray and a global search.
  • Reply 5 of 140
    whozownwhozown Posts: 128member
    Wish I could understand what the heck he's saying, but you prett much get the just of it.
  • Reply 6 of 140
    solipsismsolipsism Posts: 25,726member
    That looks like a fullscreen Fast App Switcher some I’m confused why this is being called multitasking like those a definitely a list of all apps running in the background.



    I don’t really care for that design. Don’t get me wrong, I like the larger FAS, but something seems really off about it. Plus, I’d much prefer the rest of the display area for the double-tap of the Home Button to show the iPod controls and other items I can choose from a list… like brightness, WiFi, etc.



    I’m not a fan of the Lock Screen having the iPod controls on the top where my thumb can travel naturally but then if I’m in the phone the some double-tap brings up a little bar that then need to be slid to the right before I can access the iPod controls. I find myself first hitting the Sleep Button so I can double-tap the Home Button. That shouldn’t be the easier way to access iPod controls.
  • Reply 7 of 140
    mrtotesmrtotes Posts: 759member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Nobodyy View Post


    NOOOOOOO.

    Sucks we missed out on that. Much better than the tray and a global search.



    It, or something better, may be coming in iOS5. We'll find out at WWDC I guess.



    I wonder how/where you control the volume and portrait lock, not to mention the iPod controls.

    -Only last night I saw an Apple ad in the UK reminding us how iPhone was the only smartphone with iPod built in so I can't believe we'll have to switch into the app to use the audio controls.
  • Reply 8 of 140
    irelandireland Posts: 17,589member
    Horrible UI.
  • Reply 9 of 140
    tenobelltenobell Posts: 7,014member
    How is pressing an X to erase messy or unintuitive? Especially when pressing the X is how you already erase apps. Nowhere else in the iPhone user experience do you flick apps or pages off of the screen to erase them.



    Quote:
    Originally Posted by KaptainK View Post


    Much better than the current multi-tasking dock but the mechanism to close apps is messy. Why not just support the WebOS implementation of flicking them off the top of the screen which is much more intuitive.



  • Reply 10 of 140
    foljsfoljs Posts: 335member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Ireland View Post


    Horrible UI.



    Huh? High as kite, are why?
  • Reply 11 of 140
    wurm5150wurm5150 Posts: 763member
    That'll look better and make more sense on the iPad..



    They should just use OSX Mission Control like for multitasking on the iPad..
  • Reply 12 of 140
    If this was for iOS4, then why on the home screen, the icons for Voice Recorder, and the Calc, the old pre-iOS4 icons?



    I think this is a fake, was looking for Cydia on the screens.



    Though a fake, (probably a fake white iPhone too...), the technique itself interesting. I like it better than what we have.
  • Reply 13 of 140
    mstonemstone Posts: 11,510member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Matthias03 View Post


    If this was for iOS4, then why on the home screen, the icons for Voice Recorder, and the Calc, the old pre-iOS4 icons?



    I think this is a fake, was looking for Cydia on the screens.



    Though a fake, (probably a fake white iPhone too...), the technique itself interesting. I like it better than what we have.





    Those are the same Vietnam guys that released the previous leaks, they have been right on in the past.
  • Reply 14 of 140
    tenobelltenobell Posts: 7,014member
    I believe its real. They had an early version of the iPhone 4 last year. It was the real deal.



    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Matthias03 View Post


    Though a fake, (probably a fake white iPhone too...), the technique itself interesting. I like it better than what we have.



  • Reply 15 of 140
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by foljs View Post


    Huh? High as kite, are why?



    Actually, compared to the interface employed by webOS (and stolen by RIM and Microsoft), I also think Apple's UI for managing apps is weak. I guess they're too proud to simply license it - assuming HP would license it.
  • Reply 16 of 140
    irelandireland Posts: 17,589member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by foljs View Post


    Huh? High as kite, are why?



    What?
  • Reply 17 of 140
    This is such an obvious fake, not sure why it is making the rounds. Know the biggest giveaway? There is no facetime button when he makes a phone call. It still has the hold button instead of it.
  • Reply 18 of 140
    tenobelltenobell Posts: 7,014member
    Why must they license the webOS system, why can't they come up with a different one?



    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Curmudgeon View Post


    I guess they're too proud to simply license it - assuming HP would license it.



  • Reply 19 of 140
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by solipsism View Post


    That looks like a fullscreen Fast App Switcher some I?m confused why this is being called multitasking like those a definitely a list of all apps running in the background.



    In all fairness, the multi-tasking and the app switching are integrated together both in the current implementation and in this one.



    I'm not sure there is any good reason (unless one is an Android fan and under the age of 15 or so), to keep harping on what 'true" multi-tasking is (versus app switching), or which of the various implementations of multi-tasking on mobile OS's is "really" multi-tasking. Can't we just agree that multi-tasking is just using more than one program at a time and that all the various implementations we see are "multi-tasking" in that sense?



    Personally, the only thing I like about this implementation is that it leaves the "left-swipe from the home screen" open for other uses.



    If this is in fact an early discarded multi-tasking implementation, I would guess the reason it didn't make the cut was that the little "windows" onto the apps are mostly blank and mostly don't give you a good idea of what program they are associated with or what will happen when you delete them. The current system leaves no doubt at all as to what's going on. You see a list of running apps, and you can delete them.



    My biggest wish is for them to implement the four/five finger multi-tasking gestures, at least for the iPad. Double-clicking the home button is problematic and fails a lot.



    I don't see any good reason why they shouldn't implement them like, yesterday.
  • Reply 20 of 140
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by TenoBell View Post


    Why must they license the webOS system, why can't they come up with a different one?



    Personally, because I think Palm (and now HP) nailed it. Why waste time, money and effort on doing something different just for the sake of being different? Note that I'm not talking about licensing the entire webOS system. Just pay a stipend to be able to copy the look and feel of the multitasking management bits.



    Apple may be a little too house proud. They've done so many things right for so long now, that perhaps they don't recognize when somebody else has out done them. In the example of multitasking, I think they made the correct choice in limiting background processes to only a few pre-determined functions, rather than letting apps do whatever they want in the background - and consuming the shared battery. Only their look and feel of managing those background apps needs to be improved.
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