Apple plans huge improvements in mouse support on the iPhone and iPad for its iOS 14 update, according to a new report.
It is believed that users will see more traditional cursor options, like the ones you are used to seeing on desktop computers. Apple is also expected to add new gestures that will work alongside a new smart keyboard with integrated trackpad.
iOS 13 and iPadOS first introduced mouse support for iPhone and iPad last fall. It works relatively well – and can be incredibly convenient for those who use an iPad all day – but it’s certainly not a refined experience.
Enabling mouse support today sticks a rudimentary and ridiculously large cursor to your screen, and many of the features you’d expect from a mouse are missing. iOS 14 could finally make some fixes this year.
Apple Strengthens Mouse Support for iOS
“Software changes will bring most of the cursor functionality you recognize from a Mac desktop experience to iOS,” reports 9to5Mac, who claims to have seen code since iOS 14.
This supposedly includes more traditional cursors, like the familiar arrow found in all other operating systems. Other cursors can also be included, such as the hand you see when hovering over a link in Safari, the report adds.
Apple could also include trackpad gestures, like a three-finger swipe to reveal all of the apps, similar to the ones you currently get with macOS. They should complement a new Smart Keyboard with integrated trackpad.
Apple is said to have several next-generation smart keyboard designs in development, which we first heard about in February. The code indicates that it will offer a “tap to click” option, suggesting some form of haptic feedback.
A brand new smart keyboard
“Although we could not find any information on the physical form of the new accessories, the code results imply a standard design similar to a laptop with a keyboard above and a large trackpad below”, 9 to 5 add.
These mouse enhancements would not only improve Catalyst applications on the Mac, which currently lack proper support, but they would also significantly improve the experience of using a mouse with iPad.
Apple seems to have accepted that some users prefer a mouse when using the iPad to replace a laptop, and that retaining these features does not make sense. But of course, all of that could change before iOS 14 makes its debut.
We hope to see our first glimpse of iOS 14 at WWDC 2020. However, with the COVID-19 epidemic forcing the termination of similar conferences, it is not clear whether or when Apple will host this year’s event.