Apple to release iPad Pro Smart Keyboard with trackpad this year

Apple is planning to release an iPad keyboard with a built-in trackpad this year, according to a new report from The Information which says that Apple is currently “preparing the keyboard for mass production.”

iPad trackpad coming? Image: Apple Smart Keyboard for iPad Pro
Apple’s current Smart Keyboard for iPad Pro

The Information:

Apple is planning to release an iPad keyboard accessory later this year that will include a built-in trackpad, the latest step in its effort to position the tablet device as an alternative to laptop computers, according to a person familiar with the matter. The company will likely release the accessory alongside the next version of the iPad Pro expected later this year, the person added.

Chance Miller for 9to5Mac:

Today’s report says the new iPad Pro Smart Keyboard with trackpad is expected to be “made of materials similar” to the current Smart Keyboards. This implies it will feature a fabric design, likely still with fabric-covered keys. Foxconn will be one of the “main manufacturers” of the new accessory, the report says.

MacDailyNews Note: Developer Steve Troughton-Smith (@stroughtonsmith) says via Twitter, “I’ll reiterate that as of right now, iOS 13.4 doesn’t have any changes to suggest trackpad support beyond what AssistiveTouch does. It does have plenty of new keyboard features, but if there’s advanced mouse cursor support coming it’s been compiled out of the builds.”

8 Comments

  1. I told Steve back in 2010 that he’d have to put a mouse trackpad onto the iPad by 2020, but did he listen? He tried filing my fingers down and I still have the scars to this day, which I wear as a badge of pride and honor.

    1. BS. Apple will not do this. They will not release a trackpad for iOS. iOS is not a point and click interface. Period. End of story. When will this nonsense just die. Over and over. iOS is for multi-touch! MacOS is for point and click AND multi-touch: you see that big glass trackpad on MacBooks? It’s got all the multi-touch of iOS. Most people seem to forget that when they say that MacOS needs multi-touch.

    1. What, Windows crapplications? Don’t make me laugh – your views are ‘ardly ‘armless, it’s Apple wot set off the ARMs race, not the putrid scumholes at Microshifty.

  2. A shareholder yesterday (MDN reader?) asked about getting an “iPad OS Pro” to go with his iPad Pro to unleash its power, TC passed it off to Craig who basically said they are always looking for ways to maximize the potential of their devices and to “stay tuned”. My sense was that a distinct OS isn’t in the cards, more likely that they’ll just continue iterative improvements to iPad OS with occasional standout features like this trackpad support.

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