Patent suggests Apple may have planned ‘iPhone nano’

Rumors of an iPhone nano are almost as old as the iPhone itself: the first such mumblings began in 2008. Now, Patently Apple suggests that Apple definitely was once, or still is, considering a smaller version of the iPhone. The patent in question shows a device with multiple inputs and hardware buttons or LED lights that would allow a user to interact with the phone. Given the touchscreen technology used in today’s iOS devices, we suspect this patent from 2006 would no longer reflect what an “iPhone nano” might look like. In any case, it is arguable that Apple does not need to create an “iPhone nano” now that it sells a $50 iPhone 4 and a free-on-contract iPhone 3GS. The patent was just one of 20 recently published patents that were granted to Apple.

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