A capacitive camera key actually sounds appealing

Evan Selleck
Contributing Editor from  Arizona
| Published: February 20, 2014

No matter how many times we see a leak, or run through speculations, or talk about "must have" features, everything's just a toss-up until we get the final announcement. Leading up to Samsung's unveiling of what's believed to be the Galaxy S5 in just a few days, we've been subject to a battery of new information, leaks, words and just about everything in between. If you didn't think anyone was excited for the Galaxy S5, think again. It's obviously one of the most anticipated devices of this year, and considering all of the talk about what it could feature, I'd be surprised if it weren't.

Over the last couple of weeks you've probably seen plenty of articles and reports "confirming" certain specifications for Samsung's upcoming flagship device. If you read those articles, and I'm sure you did, then you probably noticed a pretty significant trend: They all still used that rumor word quite a bit. Why? Because they're still just a rumor. All of them. Even the ones we see and hear get repeated over and over again.

They're all just rumors. For now.

Nothing is official quite yet. Not until Samsung sends people onto a stage to show off the device and unveil all the cool new additions. And while that may be the case, that doesn't mean we can't talk about those rumored features or specs. In fact, I think we all know that many companies hang onto the words of these types of things, to gauge where consumers might be when it comes to new ideas.

Recently, there has been a report that started to make its way around the 'net that suggested Samsung would include a new button on their upcoming Galaxy S5. This button would allegedly be of the capacitive variety, and be found along one side of the handset. The purpose of this button? A camera key. Yes, the button that's all but disappeared from every handset out there, not counting the Windows Phone-based devices, which are required to feature it.

Now, there are a couple of interesting things about this supposed new button. First, the most obvious: it's a capacitive activator, and it's not going to be on the front of the device. The fact Samsung would consider putting a capacitive key on the side of the handset seems almost crazy, but then you get to the second interesting part.

According to the report, Samsung's going to make it a capacitive button that only functions in certain modes, and could even be used to activate different functions in certain apps. So, while its main function may be for the camera, the fact that it's not strapped down to that one particular function is pretty enticing.

That's honestly the only reason why this new button, if it does indeed exist, is even remotely interesting. More than that, though, I think it's the only reason why Samsung would even consider it. A physical camera key is pretty great on Windows Phone, especially since you can use the button to activate the camera directly, but I don't think that's a button most manufacturers are considering for their upcoming devices. The lock screen options that you can find on every phone these days is usually fast enough for most people, it seems.

What do you think of the idea of having a customizable capacitive button on the side of your device? Is that something you could see yourself using? Or would you prefer an actual, physical camera key that did one thing? Let me know.