Want Magic Keyboard with Touch Bar? Here are two concepts that envision how Apple could port the new Touch Bar feature from the 2016 MacBook Pro to the Magic Keyboard for iMac and Mac Pro users to enjoy.
Apple’s outing of the new MacBook Pros and their Touch Bars ended months of speculation that the new notebook computers would somehow incorporate a touch-screen above the keyboard. Those rumors were, of course, accurate, as it turns out, but they will surely now give way to more rumors that Apple will bring the same technology to the iMac and Mac Pro via a newly revised Magic Keyboard.
Apple’s external, wireless Magic Keyboard is now ripe for such technology being added in order to bring the same touch-based interaction to Macs that aren’t the new MacBook Pros. Whether Touch ID would also make the jump to a wireless keyboard is debatable, mainly because of the possible security issues that may arise, but we have to assume that Apple is looking at a way to bring the Touch Bar to its external keyboard. Quite how it does it, though, we’re not really sure.
Interestingly, we have been made aware of two concepts that attempt to answer the question of what a Magic Keyboard would look like with a Touch Bar atop it, but both have approached the situation very differently. We love both, too, so we can’t decide which makes most sense to us.
The first, shared with us by designer Sangho Lee, is based around a detachable “Magic Touch Bar” that would be placed above the existing Magic Keyboard and then connect to it via Lightning port. We’re not sure Apple would go for the idea of another external accessory joining a keyboard and mouse, but this approach does mean the Touch Bar could be used without the keyboard, theoretically.
A more likely solution is for a revised Magic Keyboard to be released, and that’s what Bas van der Ploeg has in mind, too. His design is basically the existing Magic Keyboard with a Touch Bar built in, and it looks just perfect. It’s certainly the most Apple-like solution, we feel.
It is, of course, possible that Apple won’t be allowing the Touch Bar to leave the MacBook Pro, but we think that would be a mistake. Hopefully, Apple does, too.
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