Apple’s recently published patent shows a MacBook without a keyboard and buttons. Instead, the input area can be configured according to your own needs.
Apple always finds ways to surprise its customers – and to break new technological ground. In order to stand out from the competition, the tech giant sometimes has to come up with unorthodox ideas, as the recent patent filing suggests. Here you can see that Apple is working on the aesthetics of its MacBook series and is planning a device completely without a keyboard.
Apple wants to replace buttons and keyboards with invisible input areas
According to the new patent, which was granted to Apple on May 19, 2022 by the US Patent and Trademark Office, the laptop will not only remove the trackpad, but also the keyboard. The description of the technology refers to a “configurable force-dependent input structure for electronic devices”.
The patent appears to be aimed at avoiding past problems with mechanical keyboards in the future. Defective keys or incorrect functions and failures due to dust, dirt or liquids getting stuck under the keys would then be a thing of the past.
According to “Macworld” in the description, the intended input area, where a laptop’s keyboard and trackpad are normally located, consists of a single metal surface, under which are two further layers that contain input and other controls .
This is how the new technology should work
A layer that yields to pressure, as described above, would provide feedback to the user about the input. Small, slightly transparent holes in the metal surface could use light to display the buttons or borders and be adjusted according to user behavior – similar to the bar on the latest MacBook Pro models.
It is particularly interesting that, according to the patent, the owner can configure the input area himself. This makes it possible to use the entire surface instead of a keyboard, for example as a numeric keypad or trackpad – depending on the temporary application or need. However, it is still unclear whether the idea will ever be implemented and whether such a device will come onto the market.
WWDC: Apple unveils software and hardware news
What can actually be discovered at Apple in the near future will be announced by the industry giant in June 2022 at this year’s Worldwide Developers Conference (WWDC). Since the focus of the event is traditionally on software news, information about the innovations in iOS 16, iPadOS 16, tvOS 16, macOS 13 and watchOS 9 can be expected.
But rumor has it that a new multitasking user interface for the iPad and a few updates for the iPhone will also be introduced, as well as innovations in the area of health and fitness features of the Apple Watch. The keynote can be viewed as usual on YouTube on Monday, June 6, 2022 at 7 p.m. German time.