Apple has launched a freshly redesigned set of all three of its peripheral devices — keyboard, mouse, and the trackpad.
The New Magic Keyboard
The iconic white keyboard has received the most noticeable and the most significant changes of all three products. Apple had swapped the weak looking design for a-wedged-block-of-solid-aluminium type of look. It looks and feels more solid and sits firmly on the table.
The keyboard has also gotten a lot flatter, and although the keys have been made marginally smaller, it doesn’t feel cramped. If anything, it feels larger and more spacious!
The keys are ‘clickier’, generating a better tactile feedback. The spring mechanism underneath the keys has also been upgraded. The overall effect is a much smoother typing experience.
One common change in all three peripherals is that they now have non-removable, rechargeable Li-Ion batteries. The battery life is good, and the keyboard can be used while charging too.
Final Verdict: Minimalist in concept, effective in performance, and easy on the eyes, the new Apple keyboard is worth the upgrade.
The Magic Mouse 2
At first glance, it will be nearly impossible to tell the difference between the new mouse and the old one. The texture, the feel, and the weight are all almost the same as in the original.
So what’s changed? A few minor design tweaks barring, the biggest change is that it’s now rechargeable. You plug the lightning cable into the bottom of the mouse to charge it, which means you can’t use it while it’s charging.
Apple also claims that the Mouse can last a whole day just by being plugged in for 2 minutes!! Even if that’s not fully true, we can be sure of better than average charging speed.
Final Verdict: Not being a complete – or even a major – overhaul, upgrading to Magic Mouse 2 seems to be a bit wasteful, especially considering the cost that is expected to be around INR 4000.
The Magic Trackpad 2
From the clean all-silver glass and aluminum top of the Magic Trackpad, Apple shifted to an edge-to-edge uninterrupted white glass surface for the Magic Trackpad 2.
In depth and height, the Trackpad 2 exactly matches the Magic Keyboard. Even the “wedge” shape is carried forward. But the most dramatic change is under the hood.
With the introduction of Force Touch technology, the new Trackpad becomes an essential accessory. It is the only way you can use the Force Touch features of the new Mac OS. It is also fully customizable, down to the amount of haptic feedback that you get from clicking.
What is strange though is the requirement from Apple that asks for a “Bluetooth 4.0-enabled Mac with OS X 10.11 or later,” to use the new Trackpad. This seemingly denies compatibility to most Macs sold before late 2012, even if they’re running OS X 10.11 El Capitan. That could be because the new Trackpad is not performing to its potential yet.
Final Verdict: If you have a recent Mac, and plan to use the best features of the Mac OS, the Magic Trackpad is a must. It isn’t all “magic” as yet, but it sure promises to be!