The latest patent document shows that apple has acquired the latest patented technology for touch-screen buttons just in November. This technology shows that you can add a screen to the side of the phone to display content and actions. Looks like a virtual touch function screen that turns on the camera and displays some toggle buttons, a bit like the traditional camera’s top operation now.
Described, the description is that the screen can display virtual buttons, toggle buttons and other functions, and even display the application’s icons.
These patent applications won’t be immediately available on the current machine, but maybe one day?