iPad Pro When will Apple attach a trackpad to the iPad Pro?

Discussion in 'iPad' started by nigelly, Dec 17, 2015.

  1. nigelly macrumors regular

    nigelly

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    #1
    Seems like a huge disadvantage when comparing it to the Surface. Is Apple afraid of crippling the MacBook market?
     
  2. username: macrumors 6502a

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    #2
    I think the iPad should be given a trackpad. It's easier than touching the screen when using the keyboard.

    I think up to this point it made sense to keep the iPad purely touch. Now I think they can add a trackpad and the iPad will benefit.
     
  3. GrindedDown macrumors 6502a

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    #3
    The only thing I could see them doing is adding a Touch ID button to the trackpad as is expected with the MacBook lines at some point and allow the Touch ID pad to act as another touch/scrolling input. Kind like tha button on Lenovo thinkpads.

    Other than that I don't really see it, especially not with the iPad pro as the now have pencil as a very long pointing device and the other iPad lines are too small to really need a trackpad.

    Wishful thinking if you ask me.
     
  4. Beavix macrumors 6502a

    Beavix

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    #4
    A trackpad needs a cursor on screen in order to function. Adding a cursor into an iOS will transform it into a mess because it was designed for touch input, not for mouse input.

    Microsoft has been trying to mix touch with mouse input for some time and Windows still looks like a combination of two worlds apart.

    You want mouse, keyboard and trackpad - you want a Macbook.
     
  5. Phil A. Moderator

    Phil A.

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    #5
    I don't understand this argument at all to be honest - the cursor would only show in the presence of a mouse / trackpad and it would interfere at all with touch operation. Android has supported a mouse pointer like this for years and it works really well
    However well a touch interface is designed, a mouse is simply better for some tasks (such as text selection and when using remote desktop type applications) and Apple's stubbornness in this area is slightly baffling to me
     
  6. username: macrumors 6502a

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    #6
    No, he wants an iPad with trackpad input. That does not equate to a MacBook.

    Now that Apple has officially launched iPad pro with a keyboard, the gorilla arms problem is still an issue.

    It is much more ergonomic to use a trackpad with an upright screen.
     
  7. aevan macrumors 68000

    aevan

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    #7
    No, they don't think a trackpad is necessary for an iOS device. The answer to the question you asked in the subject is: probably never.
     
  8. sracer macrumors 603

    sracer

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    #8
    Apple likes to do things incrementally. The introduction of the 2-finger drag on the onscreen keyboard to move the text cursor was the first step. That is very useful and I can see Apple offering a follow on keyboard cover that provides a trackpad space that simply mimics that behavior. Very doable. I wouldn't be surprised to see it within a year.


    Actually it wouldn't "transform it into a mess". Some of us have used the BT Mouse tool available for jailbroken iPads and it works with iOS in the same manner as a physical keyboard. When it isn't detected, there's no pointer.

    The inclusion of support for mice/trackpads would not magically require it. Because of Apple's app store guidelines, Apple can ensure that no app released into the store requires a mouse/trackpad. Apple is already doing this with the Apple TV app store... no app can be submitted that requires only a gamepad for use... must also be usable with the remote.


    Are you saying that because Microsoft can't get it right that it is impossible to do? If Apple believed that, they would never have attempted the iPad in the first place. Back in 1999-2001, Microsoft and their partners produced tablets. They were horrible.

    That is an oversimplification of the usefulness and flexibility of having a tablet that supports an optional keyboard and trackpad.

    But you're not alone in your criticism of the idea. Sometimes the criticism is based upon what others have done in the past (as seems to be the basis for your criticism), for others, they can't see the usefulness until they see the implementation and try it out for themselves.

    I use tablets that support trackpads/mice. Their use is not required in order to use the tablet, but there are times when it is helpful. I have keyboards for my iPads. I don't use them all of the time, but when I do use them, having the option to use a trackpad/mouse would be welcomed.
     
  9. Beavix macrumors 6502a

    Beavix

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    #9
    iOS was designed to be used with a finger. If you want precision input, you can use a Pencil, which is basically a much more precise finger. This is how Apple envisioned their touch devices from the very beginning. The users must interact with the screen directly, not through intermediary devices moving a cursor on the screen. Like it or not, there is simply no place for a cursor in iOS. I'm not saying it can't be done, but it does not belong there.

    And if they start mixing things and adding support for a cursor in iOS, it'll be a slippery slope. Some users will demand support for mouse in all apps. Then they'll want OS X on the tablet because hey, if it has mouse, trackpad and keyboard, why not just run OS X on it? And if an iPad runs OS X, how about adding a touchscreen to a Macbook? And add support for finger interactions in OS X? Do you really think Apple is willing to go down that road? I don't think so.
     
  10. hiddenmarkov, Dec 17, 2015
    Last edited: Dec 17, 2015

    hiddenmarkov macrumors 6502a

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    #10

    As has been pointed out in other threads, if jailbroken cursor can be there with mouse attachment. Jail break didn't add cursor gui functionality ....it just unlocked the feature already in place. These people aren't asking for a new feature....its there already.

    This trend to not only touch also seen with the stylus....err pencil (some are reporting it as a decent ghetto mouse like setup). With IPP apple already gave in with a device to say touch needs a friend too. Keyboard also says hi....it was actually made for it. In the past I only got limited functionality pairing up my wireless apple keyboard to an iPad/mini in the past.


    Some people are already using this as laptop/desktop replacements. Assuming ergonomics come into play screen propped up at angle some distance from the eyes, good office chair with adjustable arm rests to get good form, etc. Put another way...touch only not working well here. Insert not all users do this. Insert counter but some do....Time will tell which camp "wins".

    TBH if a betting man I'd put money on touch always sharing the spotlight as devs code for Pencil use more heavily or leverage keyboard use (IE. key combo's like shortcuts). Going for the long shot bet...we won't get a mouse or trackpad per se. Somehow Pencil will emulate these better in the future as a caveat.
     
  11. ZombiePete macrumors 68020

    ZombiePete

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    #11
    Let me just put it this way: I would much rather Apple add trackpad support to iOS than try to bastardize OS X into a tablet OS. I don't know that trackpad support is inevitable, but I would bet big that they are working on testing it at the very least.
     
  12. TurboPGT! Suspended

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    #12
    This is just raw habit spewing out and becoming an "idea", that becomes a thread.

    Yes, when I first attached my Smart Keyboard to my iPad Pro and starting going, naturally I was also looking for a mouse to grab (not a trackpad like you say, because I don't use a trackpad regularly).

    But this is nothing more than habit. And habit should not dictate anything. The iPad has an ENTIRE OS AND USER INTERFACE designed for touch. Adding any sort of cursor tracking is not an option, and not happening. Its just not. It is touch OS, not a mouse OS, and thats the end of it.

    Moving on.
     
  13. sracer macrumors 603

    sracer

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    #13
    What slippery slope was created by providing support for a hardware keyboard? (which by the way Apple produced on day-1 for the iPad 1). What applications were produced that took advantage of keyboard shortcuts that were only viable via a physical keyboard? What slippery slope was created by providing a hardware-assisted Pencil?

    As for OSX on an iPad, you're bringing up an issue that is not part of this discussion simply in an attempt to support your belief. The further down you go on the slippery slope the weaker you make your case. ;)
     
  14. Beavix macrumors 6502a

    Beavix

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    #14
    AFAIK there is NO support whatsoever for a mouse cursor in iOS. The jailbroken cursor you're talking about is just a touch simulator driven by a BT mouse. That's not the same thing like true support for pointing devices.

    The hardware keyboard is just an improvement of an input method already present in iOS. That's exactly what the Pencil is now, it's an improvement of the touch input. But mouse input and touch input are two different things which require different implementations and different OS/app support.

    Nnnnope. ;)
     
  15. KPOM macrumors G5

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    #15
    I don't see them adding a cursor, but would not be surprised if they are working on some solution to make it easier to select text and graphics. "Gorilla arm" is definitely still an issue when using programs like Word or PowerPoint.
     
  16. Nausicaa, Dec 17, 2015
    Last edited: Dec 17, 2015

    Nausicaa macrumors 6502a

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    #16
    I agree. I can understand the rebuttal, that Apple could just restrict apps designed FOR mouse input in their standards and reject apps that attempt it. At the same time, I'd prefer iOS just stay as a touch focused OS. I admit I only ever use the software keyboard though and prefer that. Someone mentioned text selection as a good use case scenario for a pointer, but I like the two-finger on the keyboard solution Apple came up with better. I buy iPads because I can do everything on the screen directly.

    The only solution that would be acceptable to me, personally, would be a trackpad that registered a 1 to 1 relationship on the iPad's display. The "cursor" on screen would never be persistent, but say a glowing orb or something might only appear on the screen when your finger touches the trackpad, and you move it around and then click to select. Once you remove your finger, the orb disappears. It would just function as a phantom finger, in a sense.
     
  17. rowspaxe macrumors 68000

    rowspaxe

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    #17
    Try this sometime. agonizing. Apple has several design choices to make if it wants to advance the ipp
     
  18. theluggage macrumors 68030

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    #18
    the iPad pro is a tablet running a UI specifically designed for touch operation with a huge catalogue of purpose-written apps. The Surface Pro is a tablet/laptop hybrid who's main selling point is its ability to run regular Windows software designed for desktop/laptops - MS's previous attempts at pure tablets that couldn't run legacy software were flops.

    Yeah, we'll see how that one goes. Still not convinced that the iPad Pro has a role outside niches that use the stylus for drawing or writing (in which case, you don't want a keyboard in the way). I had my iPad in a keyboard case for a while and found that it was (a) still not wonderful for typing and (b) completely ruined as a hand-held tablet until you took the case off (maybe the new keyboard is an improvement in that respect if it can easily be removed).

    One reason why they were horrible was that they were running software designed for keyboard and mouse. I also had a pre-iPhone Windows phone which had a slide-out keyboard, a touchscreen, a toothpick stylus, a joypad, a jog wheel and umpteen buttons... plus software that was optimised for none of them. The defining feature of the iPhone and then the iPad was that the hardware and OS and apps were designed from the ground-up for touch.

    NB: if you ever try writing web apps that need to work with touch & mouse: getting them to work, sort-of, with both is easy - getting them to work well with both is hard. You just don't design mouse-driven apps and touch-driven apps the same way.
     
  19. rowspaxe macrumors 68000

    rowspaxe

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    #19
    Its not just a habit--its a tried and true more efficient way to work. See many posts on "gorilla arm"


    See ya next year! Meantime, consult numerous "apple never made a stylus and will never make one" threads here at MR
     
  20. rowspaxe macrumors 68000

    rowspaxe

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    #20
    Not really convincing. Imagine a mouse/trackpad pointer for MS office for ios. Total win--its just the nature of the task that lends itself to a curser
     
  21. Beavix macrumors 6502a

    Beavix

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    #21
    Why is a cursor so important in Office for iOS? We're talking about apps designed and optimized for the touch input. Why do you need a cursor? Are you always using your iPad Pro in "laptop mode", connected to the external keyboard? It's a tablet, not a laptop. And when you type a lot in Word I imagine you don't interact with the screen that much, so the "gorilla arm" argument is not really convincing.

    This is where I think Apple made a mistake by offering the type cover. It basically tricks people into thinking the iPad Pro is similar to a laptop, which is certainly not.
     
  22. sracer macrumors 603

    sracer

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    #22
    I'm a software developer and getting them to work well is not hard, but it does require some upfront design. But that's not what anyone is advocating. We're not talking about designing apps optimized for both, but keeping the apps optimized for touch but allowing mouse navigation.

    For the iPad, it should always be designed for touch.
     
  23. rowspaxe macrumors 68000

    rowspaxe

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    #23
    Like it or not--ipad pro plus keyboard is very laptop like. Where apple wants to go with this is unclear.
     
  24. sracer macrumors 603

    sracer

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    #24
    It most definitely is similar to a laptop. It isn't identical. There's a difference.

    Do you think that Zagg, Logitech, etc. also made mistakes by offering keyboard covers for the iPad? I get the impression that you think that the iPad Pro is the first iPad to have a keyboard option.
     
  25. Beavix macrumors 6502a

    Beavix

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    #25
    No, but it seems to me that most people buying an iPad Pro also get the keyboard. It's like they view the keyboard like a mandatory accessory. That's certainly not the case with the other iPads.
     

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