iPad Pro iOS should have a pointer when a keyboard is connected to iPad

Discussion in 'iPad' started by Rogifan, Nov 3, 2018.

  1. Rogifan macrumors Core

    Rogifan

    Joined:
    Nov 14, 2011
    #1
    Just playing around with a Pro at an Apple store today and the first things my thumbs looked for when I put my hands on the keyboard was a trackpad. And the first things my eyes looked for was a mouse pointer on the screen. Using a keyboard without a trackpad just feels so wrong. I get that Apple considers iOS to be a touch interface but I think a decent compromise could be offering a mouse pointer when the iPad is connected to a physical keyboard. And then every physical keyboard should have a trackpad or allow the space bar to be used as one. Take the keyboard off and the pointer goes away. Seems doable?
     
  2. m00min macrumors 6502

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    Jul 17, 2012
    #2
    I agree, allowing a keyboard and not mouse is silly. Makes me laugh when I see photos of drawing and design apps running on an iPad with a keyboard attached. Yeah, the photo looks good with a nice illustration on the screen and a load of recognisable tool palettes are visible. In ten years time there'll be loads of people suffering from "iPad shoulder" from having to use a pen on a vertical screen with a keyboard in the way.
     
  3. TrueBlou macrumors 68040

    TrueBlou

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    #3
    There was a time when I’d have proclaimed there was no need for such a thing with iOS.

    But using an iPad Pro for a couple of years, I’ve definitely come around to the idea a bit.

    It would be nice when using the keyboard to not have to reach over and touch the screen. Something Apple themselves say is a stupid idea and it’s why they don’t do touchscreen Macs.

    I tend to flip back and forth quite a bit between keyboard and tablet use with the Pencil, within the same workflow and to be honest, it’s less than ideal.

    I’m getting better at planning ahead so that I get my Pencil based work done in advance of switching to the keyboard. But yeah, these days I can begin to see a use case for having a Magic Trackpad connected.

    I think it will eventually come. With the push Apple are making for the iPad Pro to be a “serious” laptop replacement. They have to. There’s no substitute for having both. As much as I love using the Pencil, and don’t get me wrong, using it to tap the screen is a lot easier than using a finger to stretch across, but it’s still lacking if Apple want the Pro to be a true laptop replacement.

    Having said that, it’ll never be a complete laptop replacement for me until they give us an iOS version of Xcode.
    I mean, come on, it’s more than powerful enough for it. And it’d be a damn sight better than having to use a Remote Desktop connection. Hell even the simulator wouldn’t need to be a “simulator” it’s native iOS after all.
     
  4. Rogifan thread starter macrumors Core

    Rogifan

    Joined:
    Nov 14, 2011
    #4
    Yeah but I think it should only be there when a keyboard is attached. So for the majority of iPad users who never use a physical keyboard they wouldn’t see it. But for the small number that do it would make their workflow so much better.
     
  5. sparksd macrumors 68020

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    Seattle WA
    #5
    My Android tablets support a mouse - the pointer is only visible when the mouse is attached. Works very well and I wish I had the option with my iPP.
     
  6. Absrnd macrumors 6502a

    Absrnd

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    #6
    I can relate for having a mouse pointer with the keyboard,
    but what I don't get, is that most that have the keyboard attached to the ipad all the time, don't buy a Macbook instead ?
     
  7. TrueBlou macrumors 68040

    TrueBlou

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    #7
    Oh I totally agree, it should not be a system wide implementation.
    I think, as you say, when the keyboard is attached and limited to apps which benefit from it.
    I think it would be something that would be up to developers to enable for our apps. That way we could choose if the app would benefit from it or not.

    I only say that because, certainly for the foreseeable future, there are going to be apps which the developers only want to be used with a finger, or the pencil.

    If Apple implemented a simple api which required little work on our part to use in apps, I don’t think it would take long before there was a good selection of apps using it - certainly the kinds of apps we’d want to be using it at least.
     
  8. secretk macrumors 6502

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    Oct 19, 2018
    #8
    That's a very valid question! For me personally the big difference between the iPad and the Macbook is the pencil support and the touch screen. If people do want to score heavily on that would prefer iPad with keyboard combo over Macbook.

    Of course Macbook (or other laptops) have some pros over iPad too. However maybe a lot of people have both Macbook and iPad and they use it for different purposes.
     
  9. Absrnd macrumors 6502a

    Absrnd

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    #9
    I also think that most people here are 50/50 users, just not full iPad usage or Macbook usage, and then you get this problem.
    I don't type as much at all, and can even use the on screen keyboard to fill my needs, and am more of a 90% iPad user.
     
  10. TrueBlou macrumors 68040

    TrueBlou

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    #10
    I’m the same, the Pencil support is one of the things I love most about the iPad Pro. Even when I tried using a Wacom graphics tablet with my iMac/MacBook Pro it’s just not the same as the direct interface of the iPad.

    Yeah, I know you do get tablets with a screen rather than a standard graphics tablet, but, pricey :D
     
  11. secretk macrumors 6502

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    Oct 19, 2018
    #11
    Most probably most users indeed are 50/50. I bought for now keyboard because as a rule I dislike on screen keyboards. It just does not work for me. I type really fast with physical keyboard and on screen just slows me down and frustrates me. However I am waiting for a company 14 inch laptop. Most probably once I have this, the iPad will be used only for handwritten notes and for Coloring and other artsy stuff. Naturally then I would not need a keyboard for the ipad.
     
  12. Marzel macrumors regular

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    Sep 12, 2018
    #12
    Apple is trying to sidestep the issue of bringing the classic computer experience to the iPad as much as it can. Everything from multitasking, keyboard support, the Files app etc shows that they are willing to go so far.
     
  13. TrueBlou macrumors 68040

    TrueBlou

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    #13
    For me it’s just the lack of apps like Xcode. But I did actually ditch my MacBook Pro in favour of the iPad Pro.

    I use Xcode and other Desktop apps when I’m sat in front of my Mac. When I really need access to something like Xcode in the road, I use Remote Desktop. It’s actually worked out really well. Been using the iPad Pro for a couple of years now.
     
  14. sracer macrumors G3

    sracer

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    Apr 9, 2010
    #14
    Not only is it completely "doable" it has already been done... going back to the iPad 1. With a jailbroken iPad, you could have a keyboard and mouse support. (with a simple little utility) When no mouse was present (or being used) no mouse pointer. Once the mouse is touched, the pointer was visible and active.

    Also, Android has had similar mouse support for many years.
     
  15. DNichter macrumors G3

    DNichter

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    Philadelphia, PA
    #15
    I would like it. I think they’ll eventually bring a trackpad option to iOS, but likely only within productivity apps. I don’t think it would be system wide. I also think it will be Apple branded or potentially using your iPhone as a trackpad, something like that.
     
  16. Saurus504 macrumors member

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    Jul 14, 2015
    #16
    They could definitely mirror something along the lines of Apple TVs interface. Not quite a pointer but allows an easier way to have a granular interface over your finger.
     
  17. Absrnd macrumors 6502a

    Absrnd

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    #17
    I don't think so, that would mean that some apps would be developed for mouse use, and not good for touch use, and the app experience will get fragmented.
     
  18. DNichter macrumors G3

    DNichter

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    #18
    Not if you require both for productivity apps.
     
  19. Tapiture macrumors 65816

    Tapiture

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    Oct 1, 2016
    #19
    Having a pointer is just very un-Apple like. This won’t ever happen on a device called the “iPad.”
     
  20. sracer macrumors G3

    sracer

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    Apr 9, 2010
    #20
    Android has had mouse support for years and there isn't any fragmentation. Why do you think it would be different with the iPad?
     
  21. sparksd macrumors 68020

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    Jun 7, 2015
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    Seattle WA
    #21
    I don't buy that given my experience with similar capabilities in Android. And Apple already has multi-use directives in place for developers who allow use of game controllers.

    https://developer.apple.com/library...meControllerPG/Introduction/Introduction.html
     
  22. lefkonj macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Dec 12, 2016
    #22
    To me it is simple, Android offers it and it would make the iPad pro an easier laptop replacement. Not every application but for certain things I can see. Having said that I didn't upgrade to the iPad pro and have my new one on order with a pencil and a keyboard so my opinion might change quickly.
     
  23. Pete Rodgers macrumors member

    Pete Rodgers

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    Jun 18, 2017
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    Bethesda, Uk
    #23
    Mouse and trackpad support would need to be system wide, like in Android where it works really well. Otherwise you'd end up reaching over to open an app and then use the trackpad, or other times not be able to use the trackpad at all. That would be too confusing. On Android you can click to open apps, open settings etc etc. I don't think this would minimise the touch capability but would enhance the keyboard use. Like people say, Apple happily ridicules touchscreen on mac OS (wrongly I think) but are happy to have it on iPad. Makes no sense at all.
     
  24. TrueBlou macrumors 68040

    TrueBlou

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    #24

    If that’s going to be your first iPad with Apple Pencil, I think you’ll love it.


    Well, some people probably take umbrage With it. But even my wife, a staunch iPad Mini user, who refused to use a bigger iPad, or to draw on a piece of glass, constantly wheeked my iPad Pro 12.9” away to use it.


    In fact she’s used it so much over the past 3 years that when I bought a 10.5” to try last year, but didn’t like the smaller screen. She inherited it, despite her previous IPad Mini love affair. She’s completely smitten with it, it’s now her favourite iPad of all time. Go figure.
    --- Post Merged, Nov 4, 2018 ---
    I think we all need to be submitting feature requests to Apple for it. I have, more than once and I always point out that Apple themselves say that reaching up to touch a screen when you’re using a keyboard isn’t a good user experience... In which case, why do we have exactly that with the iPad Pro?
     
  25. Mathias Denichi, Nov 4, 2018
    Last edited: Nov 4, 2018

    Mathias Denichi macrumors 6502

    Mathias Denichi

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    Jun 21, 2013
    #25
    Apple is already planning on having cursor support for the cross platform MacOS and iOS apps, on the MacOs side, planned for 2019 WWDC. They announced it in the 2018 WWDC, so Id say there is a pretty good chance.
     

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31 November 3, 2018