Apple announces Magic Trackpad 2, Magic Mouse 2 & Magic Keyboard.
Today saw Apple announce a revision to all of their first party input peripherals. The Magic Trackpad 2 is the one that really caught my eye though. A new, larger, white glass top (29% larger in fact), a rechargeable battery and Force Touch. It looks beautiful, and I can't wait to see how it feels in person. Gone is the thin floating panel effect, and instead we now have a elegant, wedge style which, from the pictures, makes the trackpad look like it's disappearing into your desk. It also looks makes the peripheral look a lot heavier than it's predecessor.
There's just a bit of a problem with it. Jeremy Horwitz hit them right on the head over in his piece for 9to5Mac:
A lot of people are going to find the $129 asking price hard to swallow for a trackpad.
That's 129 US dollars, $199 of the Australaian variety. For a trackpad. That's a 100% price increase over the old model. I don't think Apple is going to sell a lot of these. The first Magic Trackpad was the same price as the Magic Mouse, so for customers who were buying a replacement mouse for their home iMac, it was easy to consider the Trackpad instead. I don't think this same conversion will happen with a AUD$70 difference.
In comparison, the Magic Mouse 2 is AUD$29 over the old model, which I think most customers would happily pay for a rechargeable battery and a spare Lightning cable. It looks pretty much identital to the old model. I think the bottom mounted Lightning Connector is a bit dicky. I can already picture the mouse rocking around on my desk, like an iPhone 3G/3GS. Apple says that a two minute charge will give the Magic Mouse 2 nine hours of use.
The Magic Keyboard matches the style of the Magic Trackpad 2, and looks beutiful with it's new wedge shape. The move to rechargeable batteries mean that the keys go right up to the top edge of the keyboard. The layout of the keys has also changed slightly, with the function keys and left and right arrows now being full size. The keys are also similar to those on the MacBook One. This move enables the design to be slim, but it also shows that Apple's going all in on this new keybaord design. On a unity front, that's great. It would probably raise more questions if they kept with the old design. But it's not great news for users who don't like the new design.
Considering most of Apple's customers only get keyboards and mice with a new computer, I think the price increases across the range won't really be noticed. Overall, some great progress across the board.