Apple often files unusual and kind of over-the-top patents for products that could expand the capabilities of its existing products. While many of the patent ideas remain limited to Apple’s offices, some of them make their way to the commercial market. Today, we have one such patent that describes a full-fledged keyboard accessory for iPads that can turn your tablet into a Mac-like device. Let’s check out the details below.
Apple Patents New iPad Keyboard Accessory
Apple recently filed a patent, titled “Hinged keyboard accessory having multiple installation modes for a tablet computing device,” at the US Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO). It describes a full-fledged keyboard accessory for iPads, including a slot for a stylus and even a Touch Bar-like display. Although Apple already has a unique Magic Keyboard for iPads, it is more like a hybrid keyboard folio case.
The keyboard accessory in the patent, on the other hand, will feature “electromechanical” keys and a large MacBook-like trackpad to deliver a PC experience. It will also have a folding hinge that will allow users to fold their tablet and carry it around along with the keyboard attached to it, much like a laptop. The patent also mentions that there could be a dedicated slot for the Apple Pencil and a small touch-supported display.
It is also suggested that this functionality might bring along a “macOS-like interface” to further make it equivalent to a Mac machine. However, we are not sure if this is something that can become a reality.
Earlier this year, we saw Apple working on a non-floating Magic Keyboard for iPads with a slidable keyboard. Now, with this patent, it seems like the Cupertino giant is aiming to expand its accessory line for iPads to make the device more like a computer rather than a tablet. This will enable Apple to compete with Microsoft’s Surface Pro, which is marketed as a more versatile option than iPads.
However, it is worth mentioning that this patent could also be canceled before it sees the light of the day, given Apple’s track record. Nonetheless, it is an interesting concept and it remains to be seen if this ever turns into an actual product. So, we suggest you stay tuned for further updates and let us know your thoughts on this patent in the comments below.