Apple is rumored to be working on 13-inch and 15-inch variants of MacBook Pro 2016 notebooks. It is also speculated to launch a 12-inch MacBook Air 2016 soon. A patent filed by the Cupertino, California, company has revealed that the upcoming MacBook 2016 models may sport a touch-sensitive keyboard that will be devoid of keys.
Apple had filed a patent application for “force-sensitive input structure for an electronic device” in September 2015, and the patent filing was made public last week. The Cupertino company refers to this new kind of input technology as “zero travel.” It means that unlike conventional keyboards, these keyboards will not feature any physical keys like will have a touch-sensitive surface that can be used for typing, Mashable reported.
The surface of the touch-sensitive keyboard will be able to sense the varying pressures from fingers and provide feedback accordingly. This new type of keyboard will allow users to configure it according to their preferences, which means users can set aside different sections on the large touch-sensitive keyboard for numeric and special keys, as well as multiple trackpads.
To assist trouble-free typing, the keyboard will feature micro-perforations for each key that will automatically become visible through backlighting. Apple said that the arrival of this new type of keyboard will reduce the risk of component failure as there will be fewer moving parts. It will also prevent dust from entering MacBook devices.
Apple is known for filing various kinds of patents every year. However, not all patents are seen on commercially sold devices. Also, it may take several years to launch devices with new features that are revealed through patent filings.
The MacBook Pro 2016 release date rumors suggest it may get unveiled during Apple's upcoming Worldwide Developers Conference (WWDC) 2016 event in June.