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Apple have a habit when it comes to technology, they make something which seemingly no one wants and then make you want it. This strategy is what has made them the power house they are today and the Magic track pad is no different. Honestly, I was given this by my uncle who decidedly didn't want it anymore so understand I didn't purchase this so there is a possibility that I might review it with rose tinted glasses but I will try not to. To quickly explain what this actually is, a trackpad is what you will find on your laptop (the smooth surface under your keyboard which you use in place of a mouse). Typically, I tend to prefer the security which comes with the use of a physical ergonomically designed mouse but I suppose there was a market for those who prefer this form of control.
To begin with, the appearance and build quality. Keeping it short, Apple have once again created something which is both pleasing to the eye and a joy to touch (I'm letting my nerdy side out again aren't I) and overall it just feels nice and weighty. As with much of Apple's technology, it is made using aluminium to form a smooth seamless casing and the result is something which most people will be pleased with. Small rubber bumps are found on the battery case at the top which make the trackpad stick to your table to prevent it from moving around, and in my experience this seems to work perfectly. The battery case makes up the top of the pad, and first glance you will probably wonder, how do I put these batteries in and in which way? The answer is an odd indentation on the side, with the use of a coin (or fingernail) you can unscrew this cap. The answer to the question you are asking is yes, this is extremely awkward and annoying. Surely there must be a better way to put batteries in a device, but I suppose Apple did this to save on space as well as maintaining the seamless design of the body. A small instruction is shown on the underside to instruct you on which way the batteries must be entered ( I am referring to + and - in case you didn't know what I was talking about). On the opposite side is the power button, which is easy to press and looks pretty cool all things considered. To let you know the device is switched on, a small light is placed behind the casing on the device. What I mean by this is that the light is completely invisible until it actually lights up, this is very cool to me.
Now onto it's functionality, of course this trackpad is wireless and works over bluetooth so after holding the button on the side of the trackpad while your computer is searching for it allows you to connect the two devices. This process was fairly painless for me but the only trouble I have had with the connection is that the trackpad appears to take a while to 'wake up' as I wait for the little green light on its casing to flash. In regards to navigating my iMac, it does exactly what you would think. It is after all just a trackpad taken straight out of a Macbook. The most interesting aspect of this gadget is that it can take advantage of more of Apple's 'Multi Touch Gesture's' which are essentially shortcuts that you can do with your fingers. For example you can go back on your internet browser by brushing two fingers to the left, this may sound very strange but it is possibly the most useful and intuitive function to ever be added to computing. No joke. There are a large amount of gestures available but a lot of them are a pain to use, such as a four finger swipe which I doubt anyone would actually use. But this is not a problem with the trackpad but rather the software, the pad is extremely responsive. The bottom of the front panel can be pressed and used as a left click if you want more precision than simply tapping the face.
Ultimately I would say the Magic Trackpad is pretty cool, if unnecessary to most. If you have made the jump from a Macbook to a desktop iMac and are more comfortable with this method of control then perhaps you will be willing to pay the rather high price for this little gadget (you're looking at around £50).
I love my laptop, and I much prefer to use the touchpad rather than a mouse (mice give me an aching wrist after a while), so I purchased this trackpad when I wanted to use my laptop docked to a big monitor.
Functionally it's exactly the same as a laptop touchpad (specifically the unibody macbook pro), just 3 times as big, if you're used to the laptop touchpad this will feel familiar as even the glass surface feels the same. The gestures work the same and they're easier to perform due to the larger surface, it will also add gestures to a laptop that lacks them, like an older macbook pro (as long as you're using a compatible OS.
Aesthetically it's wonderful, solid aluminium with precision engineered aluminium disks to hide the batteries and to act as the power button- for the money it is definitely a well made product and it looks great.
it might not work so well in windows, I haven't tried it and i'm not sure if the gestures would work, but on a mac it's perfect, you only have to pair it once and then it works with that computer via bluetooth every time you come to use it, no dongles, no fuss.
If you don't like apples mouse, then this is a no brainer purchase
Apple Wireless Trackpad.
My wireless trackpad was bought shortly after the release in the UK. My main use for the trackpad was during a time when I had ran out of USB ports, and wanted a mouse that wouldn't add to my RSI with heavy use. The positions your hand uses with the trackpad in my opinion is more benificial than detrimental.
- Main features, specifications and Apple's description
The Magic Trackpad is for those lovers of the Apple Laptop users. It has a variety of gestures available to control and interact with the screen. The Trackpad functions using bluetooth, of which can easily be paired with your iMac. The Trackpad, unlike the media remote control for Mac, does not interfere with your Apple Laptop if both are nearby. The Trackpad is looks slick and has no buttons (the left and right clicks are enabled through a firmed tap, or if the 'tap to click' option is enabled in System Preferences, a completely silent touch is needed). Its length is 5.17 inches (13.13 cm) and a width of 5.12 inches (13.01 cm). The Height from the surface is 0.18 - 0.72 inches (0.46 - 1.83 cm). Without batteries the magic trackpad weighs a reasonable 4.94 ounces (140.05g).
- Using the trackpad.
The Apple Magic Trackpad certainly needs a bit of getting used to, even for those who are accustomed with the trackpad on the Macbook Pro. Most of the commands (apart from clicks) are done using different movements of your fingers. Using the trackpad can involve 1, 2, 3 or 4 of your fingers at a time. Scrolling, swiping between web page and a swipe to Expose are just some of the easy gestures to navigate around your Mac with ease. I set my trackpad (using system preferences) to 'tap for click', meaning a simple short tap on the trackpad for a right click, and giving a similar tap using two fingers for the left. The Trackpad can easily be placed next to your Apple Keyboard, and due to its height being the same as the keyboard, the transition is seamless. Occasionally the trackpad can be a little slow in response, particularly with the left clicks if using the two finger method. For use with creative software I give the Trackpad a touch and go review. The glass used for the trackpad has a wonderful soft metallic feel to it, and glides wonderfully underneith your fingers (avoid working with it with clammy, oily or sticky hands... it doesn't like that at all!) Working with the trackpad gives a lot more control than your generic Apple Mouse, and certainly is more comfortable, although you may suffer occasionally with the trackpad having a mind of its own.
Overall the trackpad really is a lovely piece of gagetry to play with, and an invaluable piece of equipment if like me, you suffer from RSI. The ability to stretch out your hand and relax some of your fingers while working is fantastic. I've had no major problems with the trackpad, and I'm actually impressed with its battery life. There has been so many times I have forgotten to turn the trackpad off, and even after a year there still seems to be a good amount left.
- Price and availability
As usual your Apple products are priced high. If you love your apple gagets then yes, the £50 you will spend on the trackpad will be money well spent, though it certainly is more of a novelty than a necessity. For those with RSI I would recommend it, those long hours on a computer are made just that bit easier when you hand isn't in agony!
* Fun to Work with
* Surely is a Novelty
* Handy for those with RSI
* Professional look (great for the office!)
* Can get dirty
I originally had just the magic mouse which had all the swiping movements on it that i thought fitted well with the Mac, then when i saw this come out i knew i was going to get it for many different reasons, that it would look good on my desk with all other accessories and that it would perform well with the swipes.
Due to the new update (OS X Lion), they have added a lot more actions that you can do. The sort of movements you can do are for example:
Press down anywhere on the Multi-Touch surface to physically click or double-click. Or, with "Tap to Click" enabled in System Preferences, simply tap or double-tap the surface.
Brush two fingers along the Multi-Touch surface to scroll in any direction -- vertically, horizontally or diagonally.
Using three fingers, brush left and right along the Multi-Touch surface to page forward and back.
With your thumb and index finger on the Multi-Touch surface, twist clockwise or anticlockwise to rotate an image.
With all these new actions you can do, you can move round the mac much quicker for example instead of clicking back on Safari, you can just swipe backwards and then it does it.
Battery life in it are very good with the Apple batteries.
Definitely worth getting, good to change from the mouse to this every now and then.
Essentially, this is a trackpad, designed to replace, or be used in conjunction with a regular mouse on an Apple computer. It's been on the market since July 2010 and has multifunctions similar to those found on the trackpad of the latest Apple MacBooks.
The trackpad has a stylish brushed aluminium surface and measures roughly 13 x 13cm and is designed to sit flush with Apple keyboards, such as the Apple wireless keyboard. The entire surface of the device is 80% larger than the touchpad on the MacBook and is one giant button. It's powered by two AA batteries and is completely wireless, connecting to the computer using bluetooth technology. It works on all Apple computers running Mac OSX Snow leopard 10.6.4 or higher
When you activate the trackpad for the first time, the new bluetooth device is detected by the computer instantly, and the preference panel opens allowing you to fully customise the gestures, along with instructional videos.
Being one large button, you can click, or double-click anywhere on the surface. As well as behaving in the same way as a traditional trackpad, it also recognises new gestures. These include:
Two finger scrolling - scroll up and down any visible window by moving two fingers up and down the trackpad
Pinch to zoom - certain mac applications support this, such as iPhoto, hold two fingers on the trackpad and pinch apart to zoom in.
Rotate - use two fingers to rotate object using a rotating motion
Three finger swiping - allows you to move forward and back pages (in applications such as Safari browser)
Four fingers - push four fingers upwards to view all your open applications at a glance (expose)
Plus others! It's surprising how quickly you get used to these functions and how much easier it is to navigate your computer with a little practice. I personally run both the mouse and trackpad side by side.
The trackpad retails at £55, or comes as an option with the new iMac.
This funky litter peripheral was announced by Apple on the 27th July 2010. Since then some mac users have no use for their old mice due to this new and intuitive way to navigate around your mac desktop. For me when I first saw this I thought this is really cool and great for those who use imacs but don't get the pleasure of using a trackpad like the macbook (pros) have.
The price - The price for this gadget is £60 (as of 17/3/11). This happens to be more expensive than an actual mouse, and it's even £3 more expensive than their new-ish multi touch mouse however this is a totally different product in it's own way and if you can justify the cost in that you'd get plenty of use out of it then you'll find it a great buy which will hopefully last you many years to come which some mouse's don't.
If you're used to the multi track gestures from on the macbook range then you'll be very happy to know that it's the exact same for this trackpad. If you don't know how to use the gestures and what each one does then not to worry as there are small tutorial clips within the system preferences and even then, they take no time at all to learn and understand as before you know it you'll feel like you've been using it for years.
Some cool facts and features which will help you decide in whether to purchase - The trackpad is actually bigger than the one you find on macbook's by a huge 80%, so if it's size that's worrying you, don't worry you will have plenty of room. This gives you much more room to scroll, swipe and even pinch.
If you have a tidy desk where your imac looks perfectly well suited with the wireless keyboard then you'll be happy to know the magic trackpad fits in and thanks to apples engineers meticulous detail it sits at the same angle and height as the wireless keyboard and so will look right at home along with you're computer set up. It is also wireless so there are no wires getting in the way.
The build is of a good quality as are most Apple products and feels very sturdy.
As you may know though this trackpad, like others, may not be the best option to use when doing more menial tasks where attention to detail is needed such as using photoshop where you will need maximum control over your hand.
Overall a good buy if you can justify the costs, it'll certainly help you be more efficient when doing basic tasks such as internet browsing or using pages.
At £59.00 the Magic Trackpad provides the opportunity to have a laptop-like experience using your desk top. Whilst trackpads are now standard on most laptops and netbooks (of both the PC and Mac variety) it remains standard to use a mouse for a PC.
Particularly useful for Macbook Pro users (it has all the same functionality of a Macbook Pro trackpad) it enables the familiarity with this laptop to be seemlessly transferred into the desktop domain.
Designed to sit at the same angle as the new wireless aluminum keyboard to allow a smooth transfer between the two, and for the same reason is of equivalent depth (roughly 14cm, plus 14cm wide)). It's designed of smooth wear resistant glass (designed to mimic the look of the anodinised aluminum that's taking over much of the rest of the Apple line), a thin plate of which pivots on a cylindrical chamber that holds the 2 x AA batteries that it takes (and is topped off by the on/off button). Altogether a very smooth look (assuming that you're prepared to purchase / already own the aforementioned keyboard.
With tap to click enabled via the system preferences menu this 'mouse' is virtually silent (the alternative is to physically click in a standard mouse-like way which is also possible).
80% bigger than the trackpad on the MacBook Pro and you can tell (in fact it's almost worth having one for your Macbook); the amount of the screen it covers is far superior and avoids too much strain for the swift-of-clicking. Similarly...
Are much easier to carry out than on its Macbook Pro equivalent and the standard mice that come with your Desktop. Three-fingered swipes in a right or left direction to navigate forwards or backwards, four-fingered swipes left or right to change applications, up to show the desktop, down to activate Exposé and so on, all operate efficiently.
It isn't as intuitive as a mouse for the first 10 or so instances of using it but perserverence does reap rewards (or it can be used as a nifty addition to a mouse).
5. BATTERY LIFE
I haven't yet had to change the batteries after several months. Apple to provide rechargeable batteries (2 x AA) with this product though, and a very compact charger can be purchased from its online store for £25.
Avoiding the wires that would spoilt the appearance of the product, the trackpad operates via bluetooth. Whilst it is useful that it operates up to 10m away from bluetooth devices (e.g. your Desktop) if you have more than one of these in your house you might find it getting rather confused!