Apple working on a backlit trackpad?

thesdx

macrumors 6502a
Original poster
Jul 12, 2007
673
2
I was browsing the US Patent website and stumbled upon this patent:

http://appft1.uspto.gov/netacgi/nph-Parser?Sect1=PTO2&Sect2=HITOFF&p=1&u=/netahtml/PTO/search-bool.html&r=16&f=G&l=50&co1=AND&d=PG01&s1=Apple.AS.&OS=AN/Apple&RS=AN/Apple

It appears Apple is working on an illuminated trackpad for the MacBook/MacBook Pro. It apparently responds to user input. For example, the light underneath the touchpad would become brighter as more pressure is applied to the touchpad. This seems to be the notebook equivalent of the "multi-touch mouse". I've attached the illustration that demonstrates how the trackpad would work. Sorry if you can't read the text. I had to scale down the image so it would upload.
 

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jdechko

macrumors 601
Jul 1, 2004
4,093
218
That would be interesting, but I think it's not really practical for the current touchpad methods.

However, :))) if Apple were to include a method of using the trackpad as a mini-tablet (notice that it says "object input") it would be necessary to see one's location on a trackpad, and the backlight would be a welcome addition.

Or what 4np said, but the fact that the patent is described as an illuminated touchpad makes me think an actual laptop touchpad is more likely.
 

Sdao

macrumors 6502
Jul 12, 2007
336
0
sounds like a cool idea, maybe another small addition for a future laptop

although I have to agree, sounds like something iPod related
 

Zel

macrumors regular
Jul 7, 2007
172
0
RnD takes years, a patent application in 2006 wont be in a product until 2008, IF someone in marketing finds a use for it.
 

thesdx

macrumors 6502a
Original poster
Jul 12, 2007
673
2
Interesting; however as the patent dates from 2006 it might also be related to the iPhone touchscreen?
True, but they specifically noted in the patent that it could be used for "portable computers".
 

Shaduu

macrumors 6502a
Jan 31, 2007
750
0
Southsea
The way I read this is that it's less of a backlit trackpad and more of a trackpad-cum-display. I'm thinking Optimus Maximus (I hope that's the name of it anyhoo) keyboard but cooler.