The idea of a touchscreen keyboard for a laptop is by no means new, since we’ve seen the Lenovo Yoga Book doing that in style over the past year or so. Now Apple wants a piece of that pie, judging by a new patent of theirs.
The document shows a redesign of the MacBook Pro, with may well expand the Touch Bar into a whole touch surface, a touch keyboard. Sources are talking about a big OLED panel for that task. The patent officially refers to a “dual display equipment with enhanced visibility and suppressed reflections”. It describes two versions of what such a device may look like.
One of them really sounds like a MacBook, while the other sounds like an iPad with keyboard. The first version involves two screens that are part of a single device, connected via hinge. The second has the keyboard as an accessory for the device. Polarizers are also mentioned in the documents, as a way to minimize reflections from the two surfaces. This is merely a patent, so there’s no guarantee it’ll happen in real life.
Using two screens on a laptop would draw a huge amount of power, so Apple may have to rethink its battery approach.