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Rumor: Apple Is Planning A Smart IPad Keyboard Cover

Is Apple following in Microsoft's footprints with a touch-sensing keyboard cover for the new iPad?

Rumor: Apple Is Planning A Smart IPad Keyboard Cover

[Image: Flickr user Karlis Dambrans]

A new rumor suggests Apple may show off an iPad smart cover with a built-in keyboard during tomorrow's big product event.

Why does this sound so familiar? Oh yes, it's thanks to Microsoft and its Surface—where the cover is perhaps jammed with more smarts than the failing tablet itself.

The news comes from an ex-Appler named Jamie Ryan, who claims to have spoken to several Apple folks working on the project. Several different designs have been tested, and they'll probably only be suited to the full-size iPad and will connect over Bluetooth 4. Though it's not clear if any of the designs will actually appear at this week's Apple event alongside the new iPad, but the event's invite does enigmatically say the company has "a lot to cover." And Apple has definitely been looking at tech like this as it filed a patent for a variety of smart cover designs: