In addition to introducing a new 21.5" iMac with 4K Retina display and an upgraded 27" iMac with 5K Retina display, Apple also announced some interesting improvements to their computer peripherals that will begin shipping with the new iMac models.

First up is the Magic Mouse 2. There's not a ton of changes here, and as you can see from the image above the form factor of the mouse is relatively unchanged from the last model. It now comes with a built in battery which should last a month between charges, and can be recharged using the built in lightning port. Apple claims they have also improved the design of the feet so tracking with be smoother. The use of AA batteries in the old magic mouse was definitely the biggest annoyance, and although I'm not a fan of it for ergonomic reasons, the Magic Mouse 2 seems like a worthwhile upgrade to anyone who uses one often and has to keep replacing or recharging their batteries.

Next is the new Magic Trackpad 2. This is arguably the biggest improvement of the three updates, although one could argue that the Magic Keyboard 2 takes that title. I personally think the new trackpad is the biggest improvement because it includes the Force Touch technology from Apple's MacBook trackpads. Like the MacBook, the Magic Trackpad 2 uses force sensors and an electromagnet to simulate the feeling of a traditional trackpad. This allows you to click anywhere, which was a problem with the diving board design of the previous version. The new Magic Trackpad 2 also has a 30% larger touch surface than the last model, and like the Magic Mouse 2 it has a rechargeable internal battery which can be recharged via a lightning cable.

Last, but not least, is the the Magic Keyboard. For me the biggest upgrade here is actually an aesthetic one, as the previous keyboard was a strange marriage of aluminum and plastic along with a barrel running along one side to elevate it and fit in batteries. The new design with its internal rechargeable battery pack looks much nicer and fits well with the upgraded Magic Trackpad. Apple claims they've improved key stability by 33% via the use of a new scissor switch.

If you're not a Mac user you probably won't be any more interested in these new accessories than the last generation, but they all represent notable upgrades for users who do use any of the existing Magic accessories. The new Magic Keyboard will cost $99, while the Magic Trackpad 2 is $129 and the Magic Mouse 2 is $79. What's interesting is that the higher price of the Magic Trackpad 2 also means that swapping it in for the Magic Mouse 2 with the new iMacs requires a $50 fee, which used to be a free swap with the previous models.

Like the iMacs announced today, Apple's new peripherals are already available for sale on the Apple Online Store and will begin shipping this week.

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  • FelixDraconis - Wednesday, October 14, 2015 - link

    I admit I've never seen a software dev try out a trackpad! There was a period of time some of us we were experimenting with the 3D Connexion 'mice'. But that didn't last long. Largely due to limited support.
  • topps - Tuesday, October 13, 2015 - link

    as a vi user, thank you for the extra large esc key :)
  • nrencoret - Tuesday, October 13, 2015 - link

    Conveniently forgot to mention the incredible ergonomics of the mouse charging port at the bottom eh?
  • lilo777 - Wednesday, October 14, 2015 - link

    Pointing out obvious deficiences of Apple devices would be very un-anandtech like, I guess.
  • iwod - Tuesday, October 13, 2015 - link

    1. How many recharge cycle are there? 500? And for those who keeps complaining about the life expectancy of the battery, if you only have to recharge once per month, that is 41 year. Even if you half that is it 20 years.

    2. I would like to know why the decision was made to have the port at the bottom, but the charging time for magic mouse, I guess turning it upside down didn't really matter? Or it is to mimic the swapping batteries where you turn the mouse upside down anyway.

    3. Do anyone actually like the Magic Mouse shape, isn't it too flat?

    4. Why Bluetooth 4.0 and not 4.2?

    5. No Backlight for the Keyboard?

  • DPUser - Tuesday, October 13, 2015 - link

    2. Two minute charge for 9 hours use? Sounds pretty manageable.
    3. I like it. Yes, different at first, but quickly became beloved.

    5. No numeric keypad either. I use wired.
  • Zak - Wednesday, October 14, 2015 - link

    I interviewed a support technician once who said he didn't like to work with Macs because there was no registry and there was no way to change any advanced system settings like in Windows. If there is a problem you basically have to wipe and reinstall OS X. I showed him the Terminal and asked him if he ever saw it and he said it was a text editor. So yeah, this is the kind of people who complain about OS X. There are very few people (like in this thread) who actually used both and have good, articulated reason to prefer one over the other. Neither OS X nor Windows is better. It's a matter of preference. You can do your stuff on both. But don't spew uninformed bullshit you overheard on the elevator.
  • Miller1331 - Tuesday, December 1, 2015 - link

    More snake-oil from the kings

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