We were excited when we first heard about Tactus Technology, a company that created a way for physical buttons to morph up out of a touchscreen. But it was nearly three years ago when we first encountered one of their prototypes. Now, however, the wait may be over. The company has announced they're releasing an iPad Mini cover called Phorm that features their magic button technology.
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The Phorm works by embedding blisters that, when triggered via a physical switch, swell up with fluid inside the transparent, touch-capacitive and otherwise flat screen cover.
iPad Mini users will have to live with slightly bulking up their tablets with this cover; unless Apple buys Tactus, there's virtually no chance they'll integrate the technology directly into their tablets. Android users, on the other hand, might have a different experience: Tactus is seeking manufacturing partners that will build the technology straight into the tablet.
The Phorm is expected to start shipping by end of summer, with a retail price of $149. Earlybirds can pre-order one here for $99.