In a rare media appearance, Apple’s Vice President of Hardware Engineering John Ternus alongside Bob Brocher, Vice President of Marketing talk about the new 2020 iPad lineup.
The interview was on the “Same Brain” podcast, hosted by Apple YouTuber iJustine and her sister Jenna Ezarik. The interview as a whole was very light-hearted, completely spanning the topic of the new iPad Air and iPad 8th gen. The biggest iPad news of the year so far is undoubtedly the new iPad Air, which alongside an updated screen, includes a first-of-its-kind embedded Touch ID sensor.
As John Ternus explains, the ability to include the sensor in a completely new and smaller form factor was the hallmark challenge for the Apple team.
“It’s (4th gen. iPad Air) an evolution of the technology, we wanted to get to the full-screen design and so we wanted to get rid of the home button and the chin. So, we had to come up with a new place for the Touch ID sensor, and what made it so challenging is this really narrow aspect ratio that it has because it lives in the top button. So, if you think about it, it’s only ever seeing a smaller slice of your fingerprint than what our older sensor could do.Apple’s Vice President of Hardware Engineering John Ternus
John says that ensuring that even with a smaller slice of your fingerprint, Touch ID could still recognize your finger regardless of the direction you place it on the sensor was a challenge. John attributes the ultimate success of the new sensor to extreme algorithms, hardcore silicon, and engineering efforts.
John and Bob both continue on throughout the interview to talk about each of the different iPad models, from the new iPad 8th gen. to the higher-end iPad Pro variants, the iPad mini, and touch base on ARKit. You can watch the full interview on YouTube here, or via Apple Podcasts here.