Adding more validity to the rumors that future iPads and iPhones will lose their home buttons, Apple is apparently testing multitouch gestures for multitasking on the iPhone, according to the mobile site Boy Genius Report.
As depicted in BGR’s screenshots, the gestures will let iPhone owners swipe up with four or five fingers to reveal running applications, swipe left or right to jump between apps, and pinch to get to the home screen. As you can see from the video below, the gestures appear awkward on the iPhone 4, but they hint at a future iPhone that relies entirely on multitouch and forgoes the home button altogether.
The most recent beta release of iOS 4.3 removed the multitouch gestures from the iPad, a sign that they won’t actually make it into the iOS 4.3 update. We may have to wait until the next major iOS release, version 5.0, before we can take advantage of the gestures. But given how much better suited the gestures are to entirely new hardware, it makes sense for Apple to avoid offering the features before its new devices are released.