An Apple’s patent application just made public today reveals the possibility of using an e-ink display, not an OLED multitouch unit for the Touch Bar on the future MacBook Pros.
First filed in 2013 by Apple, the patent application for an “Input/output device with a dynamically adjustable appearance and function” describes a keyboard, trackpad, mouse system with the ability to change its look and input scheme, using a bunch of e-ink panels. Apple says that the bezels of an iPad can get this technology. The patent also details a keyboard with a configurable I/O strip that is able to display symbols, glyphs, and other content dynamically. Additionally, the invention suggests that the dynamic keyboard might be used as a secondary display in order to show display GPS coordinates, Wi-Fi signal status or other relevant information.
In the patent, Apple demonstrates that the size of each configurable button can be of dynamically changed according to implementation and use. For instance, music controls might be larger and come with slider controls or a rocker switch, which come in handy for users who wish to get the most use of audio playback functionality.
What’s more, the document suggests e-ink display or similar components can act as useful secondary inputs for sections of portable devices like the iPad.
Previously, Apple was rumored to be in discussions with Australian startup Sonder, regarding Sonder’s dynamic e-ink keyboard for the 2018 MacBooks. The e-ink keyboard will offer an e-ink display under the alphanumeric keys that are capable of adjusting users’ context concerning languages or symbols.
It remains unclear whether Apple uses e-ink display described in the patent application in future MacBooks and iPads. Hopefully, we will see e-ink display land on those devices in the coming time.
What do you think of the e-ink display for future MacBooks and iPads? Do let us know your thoughts in the comments section below.
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