The New MacBook Keyboard

One thing that’s taken a few days to sink is how Apple managed to improve the keyboard on the new MacBook model. During the announcement Tim Cook mentioned that the key tops were 17% larger than the current MacBook keyboards. I noted it in my live blog on Monday, but didn’t think too much about it.

This evening I thought about going to an Apple Store to see it in person, but decided to do a virtual comparison first. Using screenshots I put together a quick comparison of the new and old keyboards. The new MacBook is about 1.3” narrower than the MacBook Pro that I currently use. I adjusted the size of pictures so the comparison would be accurate. (It’s not perfect, but it’s damn close.)

MacBook keyboards.
MacBook keyboards.

The new keyboard is bang-on the same width as the old one. But notice how much more space is between the keys on the old one. Seeing them side-by-side is actually quite shocking. I didn’t expect there to be that much difference.

With the new key mechanism replacing the current scissor switch, it looks like it’s going to be true joy to type on. I won’t by buying one anytime soon. Mostly because my current MBP is less than a year old, and because I’m not sold on the single USB-C port yet.

If the keyboard migrates over to the current MBP chassis, then I might have to look at trading up.