In an interview with Recode, an Apple engineer who helped design the iPhone X, confirmed that the metal backplates were in fact part of a larger feature that could be used to help hide apps that are no longer available.
“There’s some hardware that can do some sort of custom-design work to hide a few apps in the app store,” said the engineer, who declined to be named.
“It’s just a case of putting the extra layers in.”
“The hardware that’s doing it is really smart,” the engineer said.
“I mean, you can put a lot of different things in a box, and there’s no one app that’s going to be a universal app, so you can really hide a lot.
And we’re really lucky to have this.
But it’s also the hardware that has to be able to hide the apps.”
The Apple engineer added that it was possible for developers to create a custom metal box that could hide apps for users, but that the process was more labor-intensive than it needed to be.
“The metal box can do all kinds of custom work, but it has to do all these different things.
So it has more work involved to hide an app,” the Apple engineer said, adding that “the metal box has to get into the way.”
The metal box is also likely to require a lot more hardware to create.
“If you can get it to work, you’re in for a lot better hardware than you’d be using if you had just a simple hardware box,” the engineering engineer said of the iPhone.
“That means you’d have to do a lot to get it working.”