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MultiTouch Comes To The Desktops: Apple's New Trackpad

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Apple (s aapl) today announced a slew of new products, including massive upgrades to its aging Mac Pro line-up of computers. It announced a new display and new iMacs. But the most notable of its announcements was much less flashy — the Magic TrackPad.

This is the standalone version of the multitouch technology that is standard on most Apple laptops. Apple executives say that more people use the trackpad than their touch-ready Magic Mouse. When Apple launched the multitouch features on its notebooks, I found it hard to use. However, a few days later, the touch gestures became second nature and I am so much more productive as a result, especially when I have to skim through dozens of blogs and hundreds of articles early in the morning as I prepare for my blogging day.

The new standalone unit — slightly bigger than the one featured on a Macbook Pro — is supposed to play in tandem with the new iMacs and new Mac Pros that were launched earlier today. It connects to a desktop machine via a Bluetooth connection. Apple says it works up to 33 feet away, making it ideal to work with the new Mac Mini which is currently acting as the center of my home theater, and as a server for all of my digital music.

While I am fairly certain I’m not buying any of those new Mac machines, I am most certainly going to pick up the $70 Magic TrackPad. It would make a perfect accompaniment to my Mac accessories, especially when my Macbook Pro is plugged into an external 30-inch Dell (s dell) monitor. At $999, I am going to give the new 27-inch Apple Cinema Display a pass — at least until I eventually break down and buy it.

As an aside, the new product-line refresh is only going to help Apple maintain the momentum for its computer sales. In its most recent quarter, the company sold over 3.5 million Macs (the majority of them being notebooks), and with the new desktops the company probably will maintain some of that momentum.

11 Responses to “MultiTouch Comes To The Desktops: Apple's New Trackpad”

  1. For those of us with MacBooks, it would be great to have a second trackpad around. I see a some people posting here that they plan on using the new trackpad for when their MacBooks are plugged into a larger external monitor. I’m wondering how many people use this type of configuration (larger monitor connected) with the MacBook in clamshell mode (lid closed) v.s. lid open? With a MacBook Pro 17″ for example being essentially a desktop replacement (with the ability to travel now and then), it makes sense to use that gorgeous internal display alongside an external larger monitor (instead of clamshell lid closed) for maximum spanning screen real estate. With the Apple Bluetooth keyboard and the magic trackpad, perhaps the MacBook Pro could be paced on a stand on one’s desk with lid open and then used with the bluetooth keyboard and trackpad that can be placed freely ergonomically on the desk anywhere. This could save physical desk space potentially too. What a great idea!

  2. That’s brilliant! A device that takes up more space than a mouse and which offers less flexibility!

    I wonder if it’ll sell as well as the Magic Mouse? That is ‘not very well at all’?

  3. Hamranhansenhansen

    the multitouch technology that is standard on
    most Apple laptops.

    It’s on all Apple laptops for a number of years now.

    I’m going to get one, too, for when my notebook is plugged into a big display. It is a great match for the wireless aluminum keyboard. The tap-to-click, 2-finger scroll, and Expose flick gestures are extremely productive. Also this is so much easier on your hands than a mouse.

  4. Sweetness i love the sound of this, I really want to try it out. The price also looks good. If your interested in free products check out my website for free apple products.

  5. That really is a great price! I tell you, for the past couple of years I’ve loved using multi-touch on my macbook pro but then had to spent hundreds of dollars on Wacom pads at home and in the office to avoid using heavy strain-inducing mice; as soon as my Wacoms die, I have a feeling I know what to replace them with now :)