Patently Apple is reporting that Apple is planning on replacing Cover Flow with the “Spiral” GUI that was introduced in a patent back in September. According to a new patent, the new design will work on multi-touch devices and likely be included in OS X Lion next summer.

Patently Apple explains,

Apple’s patent describes methods and arrangements for manipulating a playlist by providing a graphical user interface in the form of a receding spiral made up of a collection of icons representing media items in the playlist having an icon in the center of the spiral representing the entire playlist. By way of selecting and dragging a representation of a media item or playlist into the center of the receding spiral, a new receding spiral based on the media item or playlist currently in the center of the spiral is created and displayed.

It looks like Cover Flow’s days might be numbered. It’s hard to imagine displaying album artwork on an iPhone or iPod touch with the Spiral interface. If I had to hazard a guess, I’d expect these two GUIs to both be present in iOS and OS X in the future. Cover Flow works really well for things like displaying album artwork on iOS devices.

The Spiral looks cool, but just how functional would it be? Only time will tell. What do you think? Is Apple trying too hard to bring 3D GUIs to their platform?

Article and Image Via Patently Apple

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