About a week ago, I took a step that I’m more and more happy with every day: I sold my Smart Keyboard Folio and bought a Magic Keyboard for my 11-inch iPad Pro. I didn’t do this for the new white color, which I love, or its floating aesthetic, I did it for just one thing: the trackpad. A keyboard and a keyboard with a trackpad are two very different things.
A trackpad doesn’t turn iPad into a computer
The stake, for me, lies in a key element: what does a trackpad represent on the iPad? In terms of form, we could go so far as to say that the addition of this interaction system turns the iPad into a computer, but the truth is that the trackpad is more of a companion to the same keyboard than a method of interaction with the device.
Before continuing, I would like to clarify a few points. The first is to remember that there has always been a controversy with the possibility of making a touch-sensitive Mac, this is something that many users ask and many others, including Apple, say it is uncomfortable. . The second is that while on an iPhone it makes sense for the keyboard to be on the screen, for prolonged typing or just to take advantage of all the screen space the iPad has to offer, it is very comfortable. to have an external keyboard.
When Apple officially introduced the first iPad keyboard, two things happened. The first is that we could all type on our iPads like we would on a Mac. The second is that they created, de facto, a touchscreen Mac. Yes, of course, the operating system wasn’t macOS, but using an iPad under these circumstances required us to touch the screen all the time, which, indeed: it wasn’t comfortable at all.
The trackpad isn’t just for the iPad
Let me explain, although the system is designed so that we can use the iPad through the trackpad, the truth is that the main use that, at least me, gives the trackpad is to support the keyboard. If I am writing and I have to select a paragraph, go back a few lines or simply move through the text to read a few paragraphs above I no longer need to go to the screen as with my old Keyboard Folio, i am using the trackpad.
Rarely do I find myself using my iPad as if it were a Mac – I find it much faster, easier, and more intuitive to touch the screen directly. This is something I already knew before making the purchase and, in fact, was the reason for my keyboard change: I use the trackpad to type.
And this is the key point that I want to communicate to those who ask me, do I buy the Magic Keyboard or the Smart Folio, which is cheaper, is it enough for me? My answer is: if you really want to write, you need a trackpad. Although it is possible, I think that we should not understand the trackpad of our iPad as a resource for moving around the system. Dragging and dropping a file, for example, is much easier with a pair of hands on the screen than with the trackpad. The reason is clear: the software.
Although some of us feared it in the past, thankfully iPadOS didn’t adapt to the trackpad until it became macOS. You can use the trackpad to move around the system, it’s true, and it is extremely useful to perform certain gestures, for example three fingers up to exit an application, but I don’t see myself passing hours on iPadOS to act via the trackpad. Just to write.