In yet another of the seemingly endless rumors about what new features Apple will include in the iPad 2, MacRumors has uncovered that GlobalDirectParts, a well-known parts supplier for Apple replacement parts for third-party vendors, has added a listing for an OEM Apple iPad Vibrating Motor.
Seeing as the original iPad doesn’t have any sort of vibration function in it, this would clearly have to be for the second iteration of the Apple tablet. The question of course then turns to what will this be used for. Could it be for silent notifications like smartphones have? Could it be opened up to app developers for use? There is a whole lot of interesting uses that run through my mind when I hear this.
The biggest use that immediately popped into my head, but is totally dependent on Apple giving access to the device over to the app developers, is force feedback for games. Vibration controls in gaming controllers has been around for some time now, and bringing this feature to the iPad would cement it as a true mobile gaming platform, something Apple seems to toy with already every time they discuss the device.
Of course, we won’t know anything for sure until the iPad 2 is announced, which is rumored to be on Feb. 1st, and even then may be in question with Steve Jobs having gone out on medical leave earlier today. Until Apple comes out on stage and says “this is the second iPad, and here is what it can do”, you have to take everything with a grain of salt, but considering the track record of GlobalDirectParts in predicting parts for Apple devices, yeah, this looks to be pretty real.
What say you? What purpose do you think a vibrating motor would serve in a future version of the iPad?