“Future Apple keyboards in MacBooks may not be affected by dust or other foreign elements that could affect its switch mechanism, with the possibility of being replaced by a glass panel with raised ‘key’ sections that acts as a rigid keyboard,” Malcolm Owen reports for AppleInsider. “Chicklet-style notebook keyboards, like the ones used in the MacBook lineup, can easily be stopped from working efficiently if dust, crumbs, or liquids enter under the keys and impact the mechanism.”
“Even so, Apple is considering ways to eliminate the problem,,” Owen reports. “Published on Thursday by the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office, the patent application for the simply-named ‘Computer with keyboard’ that effectively describes how a keyboard could be created without moving components. In Apple’s proposal, a glass sheet would be used in place of the movable keys, with raised sections to denote where each key is located.”
“The use of raised keys would enable the proposed keyboard to offer a form of tactile feedback to users, allowing users to know exactly where their fingers are placed in relation to the center of each key,” Owen reports. “To provide a level of springiness similar to a normal key’s deflection, Apple suggests the use of a raised side wall around the raised key region, which can be configured to deform on input.”
Read more, and see Apple’s patent application illustrations, in the full article here.
MacDailyNews Take: Last August, Motherboard‘s Ernie Smith wrote that Apple should remake the mechanical keyboard. It looks like they’re trying to do just that!
Apple should remake the mechanical keyboard – August 6, 2018