While Apple created this concept a while back, there have been new claims and aspects added to the patent application. For example, one of the claims includes a magnetic element to hold the Apple Pencil in its retainer. Basically, Apple is contemplating replacing the M1 MacBook Pro’s touch bar with the Apple Pencil so that it can double as both a stylus and touch bar. Apparently a touchscreen Mac is something some users want. Early last year we polled 9to5Mac readers and asked if they believe Apple should make a touchscreen Mac. Nearly half of 4,600 votes were “yes.” There are also many people out there who don’t pay attention to touchscreens and would be okay with or without. However, Steve Jobs was never fond of the idea of touchscreen Macs, explaining the inconvenience of the matter.
Apple is still imagining what a future MacBook with Apple Pencil functionality may look like. Today, Apple filed a new patent application for an Apple Pencil that is removably installed above the MacBook’s keyboard. According to Patently Apple, while the Pencil is in its retainer within the computer, it may be used as a mouse. There’s also a high-end lighting system incorporated into the retainer, which will replace the F-Key row with the Apple Pencil. The working keys will be lighted on the Pencil as a result of this. The patent depicts a MacBook with a sensor right above the keyboard and an input tool (an Apple Pencil or similar device).
Keep in mind, as this is just one of Apple’s many patents, it may never come to fruition. However, would you consider one of these MacBooks? What are your thoughts? Let us know in the comments below. You can check out the full patent application on the US Patent and Trademark Office’s webpage.
“Touch surfaces don’t want to be vertical. It gives great demo, but after a short period of time you start to fatigue, and after an extended period of time your arm wants to fall off. It doesn’t work, it’s ergonomically terrible.” While I am not against a touchscreen Mac, I know that many are. I feel that if Apple is putting the time and effort into this concept, there must be market for it. With Apple being a popular brand in the education market, I can see this being used in schools. I’m also curious which model of MacBook this would be for- MacBook Pro, Air, just MacBook, or something else? Anyhoo, it’s just nice to see Apple continuing to innovate and keep us on our toes.