Apple introduced the much-anticipated Magic Trackpad at the Apple Store Tuesday, bringing the multi-touch gestures familiar to iPhone, iPod Touch and iPad users to the desktop. The Magic Trackpad is a new wireless device that connects via Bluetooth to any Mac computer and allows users to interact with the machine through gestures, instead of pointing and clicking. Some analysts say the Magic Trackpad is a gateway to the future of computer interfaces. The demise of the mouse at the hand of Apple industrial design is premature, others believe.
Magic Trackpad a classic Apple industrial design
The Magic Trackpad bears Apple’s distinctive industrial design. The sleek, glass-covered aluminum device matches the exact same angle and height as the Mac desktop keyboard it is designed to sit next to. CNNMoney.com reports that the multi-touch Magic Trackpad became accessible at the Apple Store Tuesday morning. The online store went down for a when shortly before the Magic Trackpad went live, causing the usual intense blogging about what Apple industrial design would come up with next.
A refined multi-touch desktop
Multi-touch gestures enabled by the Magic Trackpad contain two-finger scrolling, pinching to zoom, rotating with your fingertips, three-finger swiping or switching between applications with four fingers . Apple says users can switch from typing to gesturing seamlessly, or do both simultaneously, also as swipe through pages online like flipping through a magazine. Plus, inertial scrolling makes moving up or down a page feel totally natural.
Does Apple see 3D within the Magic Trackpad’s future?
Apple’s long-term strategy to introduce a 3D interface in the future could have something to do with the Magic Trackpad. Johnny Evans at Computerworld reports the company owns various patents on a 3D user interface, and also the Magic Trackpad might be a key step in Apple’s campaign to get its users accustomed to it. Evans imagines a 3D user interface in which you virtually reach into your computer screen using MultiTouch. He also described the possibility of computing with head and arm movements or voice via Apple’s motion-detecting iSight camera .
Magic Trackpad - is the mouse on its last legs
The Magic Trackpad may be the hottest new device within the Apple Store, but it won’t kill the mouse, according to Jared Newman at PC World. Old habits are hard to break, he said. His fingers got tired, he said, as a result of Magic Trackpad’s absence of ergonomics. Being able to lift and click whenever you run out of dragging room on the mousepad was also frustrating. But Newman’s main reason the Magic Trackpad dominate anytime soon: gamers can’t play shooter games without a mouse .