As Apple continues to try and make the iPad Pro into a real alternative to something like a MacBook Air or even MacBook Pro, there are still places where it falls down, such as the lack of function keys.

It might sound silly – and it is – but for example, not being able to alter the iPad’s screen brightness from a keyboard is crazy. The same goes for the brightness of the backlit keys on the Magic Keyboard for iPad Pro, but that might be changing.

While no physical hardware function keys can be retro-fitted to the aforementioned keyboard, code found in iOS 13.5.5 by 9to5Mac suggests that Apple is working on keyboard shortcuts that will replicate the function keys.

Of course this also means you could fiddle with the brightness of things so we wouldn’t have to go wandering into the iPad’s Settings app, although such a function is already present when an iPad is connected to a keyboard which features function keys.

We’ve found evidence in code that suggests the existence of new keyboard shortcuts to change the brightness of the iPad screen or even the backlight of the keyboard. However, we haven’t been able to activate these shortcuts yet, and it’s unclear if these will be customizable.

It’s possible we’ll see something made of this feature during the WWDC event later this month. And it’s also possible that we won’t see it come to an iPad near us until iOS 14 later this year. But whenever it happens it’ll be well received because, really, why aren’t there physical buttons that do this already?

Only Apple really knows.

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