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Quick first impressions of the Magic Trackpad

July 31st, 2010

I just picked up one of the new Apple trackpads.
(by the way, that is not my hand. Do I look like a hand model to you?)

Anyway, here are some super fast first impressions:

The device ships with 2 Energizer batteries already installed.

No software comes with it; there is a little sticker telling you to go to the Apple web site to download the drivers

Even though I downloaded and installed the drivers in advance, when I powered on the trackpad, it didn’t automatically get discovered; I had to manually add it as a bluetooth device.

Once added, the trackpad works exactly like you expect; same as on a Macbook.

The surface area is very big, which is nice to use with a larger desktop display as you don’t have to worry about your finger sliding off the edge.

The angle of the device is much higher then the default Apple wired keyboard. This isn’t that big a deal but it looks kind of funny.

The four-finger swipes don’t seem to be well detected, and even when they are detected right, you can’t just keep swiping to switch apps; one swipe brings up the tab switcher, and then you gotta do things manually.

Most other gestures work pretty well, but a lot of apps don’t support the fancy gestures. I wish there was a way to send a key event with a gesture or define custom gesture. Guess we need to wait for the inevitable third-party drivers.

Safari scrolling works fine, but the momentum thing isn’t really noticeable.

In iPhoto, rotation and pinching work great, but weirdly, pinching doesn’t zoom when you are viewing a single photo, only when you are viewing a library (to make all photos bigger or smaller).

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