Apple is rumoured to be working on its next-gen iPad Pro that is expected to arrive this month. According to a new report by The Information, the Cupertino-based company is planning to unveil a new iPad keyboard with a built-in trackpad. The source claims that Apple is preparing the keyboard for mass production with Foxconn Technology as one of the main manufacturers. There are no renders of the iPad Pro keyboard with the inbuilt trackpad yet. The report states that the accessory is coming ‘later this year’.
Apple’s Smart Keyboard for iPads only has featured standard keyboard keys. A keyboard with trackpad would need a design overhaul to make space for the trackpad. According to the report, the iPad keyboard with the trackpad will be made of materials including a fabric design with fabric-covered keys similar to the Smart Keyboard Folio. Past reports have also suggested that Apple is working on a Smart Keyboard with backlit keys.
Apple introduced support for an external mouse with iPadOS 13, but it exists as an AssistiveTouch setting hidden the accessibility menu in the OS. The dedicated tablet operating system offers a host of multi-tasking features, desktop-class browsing and home screen widgets. At the company’s annual shareholder meeting, Apple software chief, Craig Federighi said, “If you like what you’ve seen us do with iPadOS, stay tuned, we’re going to keep working on it.” So it’s likely that there will be more OS updates in the near future.
With iPadOS and Smart Keyboard with a trackpad, Apple aims to offer a full-fledged computing experience on its iPads. Apple points out that the iPad Pro is powerful and could even replace a traditional laptop. The Smart Keyboard with trackpad may not be very far from launch. The Cupertino-based company will also compete against Microsoft’s Surface lineup in the 2-in-1 laptop segment.