iPhone’s Rumored Feature - Digital Compass

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by Franz Bicar

As we are nearing the announcement of the new iPhone this coming June at WWDC, iPhone rumors continue to pop up left and right. Another one has come up stating that the new version of the popular phone will include a digital compass. This compass could be very helpful to report, or instance, the direction you are facing when taking a picture or directions from the Mobile Map app as you walk or drive.

According to AppleInsider, Asahi Kasei may be the supplier of the magnetometer used in a new iPhone. The discovery of this was made by some developers recently examining header files from the iPhone 3.0 software developers’ kit. Developers say that these header files attributed to the Japanese manufacturer in a directory appropriately labeled “compass”.

More specifically, the files identify Asahi Kasei’s azimuth sensor No. AK8973, a 16-pin leadless IC package measuring 4mm square and 0.7mm thick, as the chip that will help future iPhone users determine their direction. It bundles a master clock oscillator.

Even though this feature was not mentioned in Apple’s own SDK, we can say that this is one intuitive way of using the iPhone’s superior accelerometer feature.

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