An Apple patent reveals how the MacBook could be radically redesigned

The company filed a patent application with the USPTO that reveals Apple is working on a MacBook without a keyboard. In lieu of the traditional keyboard, this MacBook would have a giant pressure-sensitive trackpad with perforated holes through which the backlight would shine through. The backlighting would illuminate a virtual keyboard instead, and the trackpad could be customized to provide a keyboard layout most suitable for the task at hand.

When using a word processor, for example, the trackpad could reconfigure itself to have larger keys for easier typing. For a spreadsheet app, the trackpad could automatically show a number pad. And during gaming, the keyboard could disappear altogether to be replaced by a virtual joystick or larger trackpad area. 

While this is cool in theory, it’s worth noting that Apple frequently patents tech that never makes it into a finished product. [Image: Apple/USPTO]