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Case makes your iPhone's back and sides touch-sensitive

Canopy Case
Wilson Rothman / NBC News

Sure, you can control your iPhone the old-fashioned way — by just dragging your greasy fingers across its screen — or you could use the smartphone's back and sides to control games, scroll through apps, or even create invisible buttons.

Thanks to the Canopy Sensus case, you can do all of those things. It was shown Sunday at a Consumer Electronics Show preview in Las Vegas.

The Sensus case doesn't look particularly special. It's just an ordinary, slightly textured iPhone case. But when you open up an app designed to function with the accessory, you'll find that tapping, swiping, or flicking your fingers across either the edges of the case or its back will control your device. The case can accept up to 10 touch-points at once, so your fingers can do all sorts of tricks.

This feature may sound a bit silly and unnecessary at first thought, but it's quite brilliant in action. You can create invisible buttons in a photo app and just press the iPhone edge to focus or slide your finger to adjust a camera setting. In games, you don't have to worry about covering up the screen with your thumbs — you can control the action using the back of the phone instead.

The Sensus case is expected to hit shelves in the summer. It will be available in iPhone 4, iPhone 4S, and iPhone 5 versions and will cost between $60 and $100.

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