A Hungarian industrial design student has imagined a pro edition of Apple’s stagnant Mac mini computer, paired with an external Apple display sporting minimal bezels and a next-generation Magic Keyboard with an integrated Touch ID and Touch Bar.
An exciting story yesterday, based on a sketchy Reddit report, alleged Apple could use dynamic keyboard technology from Australian startup Sonder, part of Foxconn’s International Holding’s Incubator program. It would presumably permit the Cupertino company to engineer a keyboard with a tiny e-ink display on each key so that the layout could change depending on the app being used.
British newspaper The Guardian confirmed that discussions between members of Apple’s boss Tim Cook and representatives from Sonder Keyboard indeed took place.
According to a post by an anonymous user named “Foxconninsider” that surfaced Wednesday morning on Reddit, Apple is allegedly working with a startup called Sonder on a next-generation Magic Keyboard that’s supposedly outfitted with an individual e-ink display on every single key.
Having e-ink-enhanced keys would let the graphics on each individual key change depending on the app currently in use. To me, that sounds a lot like an OLED strip that the rumor-mill believes will be debuting on the next MacBook Pro.
KGI Securities analyst Ming-Chi Kuo is adamant that one of the standout hardware features of a next-geneation MacBook is an OLED display which would replace the row of physical function keys. If that’s the case, and knowing how Apple works, we might easily see this OLED touch bar come to a next-generation Magic Keyboard.
That’s precisely the idea behind an interesting OLED Magic Keyboard concept by German magazine Curved.de, realized in co-operation with Dutch 3D artist Martin Hajek.
As I noted in my Magic Keyboard review, it makes a wonderful iPad companion. The Magic Keyboard is extremely lightweight and portable, which makes it super easy to slip into a bag, or even a coat or jacket pocket.
The Magic Keyboard’s low profile, and streamlined design not only make it practical for traveling, but ensures that it looks right paired with the iPad as well. In fact, I’ve been using my Magic Keyboard and iPad Air 2 together for the last few days, and I absolutely love the combination. I’ve even gone as far as to pair my Magic Keyboard with my iPhone 6s, and that was a good experience as well.
If you’re an iPad owner, you should definitely consider pairing it together with your Magic Keyboard. With iOS 9’s new keyboard shortcut abilities, and the svelte Magic Keyboard 2, you’re looking at a capable working machine when using both in tandem.
Along with my Magic Mouse 2, I decided to pick up a Magic Keyboard. The Magic Keyboard, for me, is probably the least compelling of the “Magic” devices that Apple just released. That’s primarily because I’m a full time MacBook user, so I don’t actually have a real hardline need for an external keyboard.
Yet, I’m nonetheless intrigued by the Magic Keyboard. I’m a sucker for the streamlined design, and the rechargeable batteries. Anytime you can get me away from having to replace or swap out batteries, you’ve pretty much won me over.
But does the Magic Keyboard do enough to truly justify the upgrade? Admittedly, it’s a hard sell. Not only do you have to consider whether an upgrade is necessary, you then have to justify paying $30 more than the Wireless Keyboard that it replaces.
Is it worth it? Watch our video review and find out.
Repair experts over at iFixit have performed an interesting triple teardown of Apple’s latest Magic accessories—the Magic Mouse 2, Magic Trackpad 2 and Magic Keyboard—and found that all three devices are outfitted with many of the same chips also found in other Apple products.
On the downside, Apple’s unified approach to engineering the new Magic devices has resulted in just 3 out of 10 in iFixit’s Repairability ratings due to high level of integration and excessive amount of adhesive.