Future version of iOS could use ambient light sensor to create shadows on icons for 3D effect

Future version of iOS could use ambient light sensor to create shadows on icons for 3D effect
A report from The Next Web cites an unnamed Apple executive saying that future versions of iOS could feature a neat trick that would make the UI more realistic. By dropping shadows under certain graphical "assets" based on the ambient light sensor of a mobile device, a cool 3D effect could be created. The sensor would determine how light or dark the shadow would appear on the screen.

Current versions of Apple's mobile devices would not be able to use this technology because the currently used ambient light sensor only detects light that is incidental, not directional. A combination of the light sensor, gyroscope and accelerometer could be a valid workaround, but the battery life necessary to run this would probably not make it worth doing.

Why would Apple even think about such a minute detail like shadows? Take a look at the video below which shows a design element in the upcoming iOS 6. The gyroscope is used to change the reflections on the Music app's radio buttons, depending on how the user is holding the device. By taking care of the small details, Apple endears itself to its millions of fans.

source: TheNextWeb, Gizmodo via AppleInsider

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