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May 26, 2024

Apple to Release USB-C Versions of Magic Keyboard, Mouse and Trackpad in Spring 2024

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Dec 9, 2023

Apple is preparing to transition its Magic Keyboard, Magic Mouse, and Magic Trackpad accessories to USB-C, with the new models set to be released in spring 2024 according to a recent report. This move comes as Apple transitions its entire product lineup to adopt the increasingly ubiquitous USB-C standard.

Timeline of Events Leading to Transition

For years Apple has faced growing pressure to adopt USB-C on all of its mobile devices. While newer product categories like the iPad Pro debuted with USB-C in 2018, Apple continued using its proprietary Lightning port on the iPhone. The situation came to a head in 2022 when the European Union passed legislation requiring small electronic devices like smartphones to use USB-C charging by late 2024.

With the new law going into effect, Apple confirmed during its 2022 Worldwide Developers Conference that the iPhone 15 coming in 2023 would switch to USB-C. This set the stage for Apple to transition its accessory ecosystem as well, with the latest report indicating that the Magic Keyboard, Mouse, and Trackpad will make the changeover in spring 2024.

Year Event
2018 iPad Pro switches to USB-C
2022 EU passes USB-C legislation for electronic devices
2022 Apple announces iPhone 15 will use USB-C during WWDC presentation
2023 Report indicates Magic accessories will transition to USB-C
2024 Expected release of USB-C Magic Keyboard, Mouse and Trackpad

Details on New USB-C Accessories

Little is known so far about the new USB-C Magic accessories coming in 2024. But the shift to USB-C will provide some definite improvements over the current Lightning versions. USB-C supports much higher data transfer speeds compared to Lightning, meaning syncing and file transfers will be quicker. The Magic Keyboard may also be able to directly charge a MacBook Pro or MacBook Air while connected.

Additionally, the move to USB-C will make the Magic accessories compatible with Apple’s latest iPads like the iPad Pro and iPad Air which have already dropped Lightning. Users will no longer need adapters to connect their Magic Keyboard or other accessories to modern iPads.

Pricing and designs for the new USB-C accessories remain unconfirmed. But given the Magic line’s premium pricing it would not be surprising to see the USB-C models cost the same or slightly more than their Lightning counterparts. We may also see tweaks to the controversial Magic Mouse which continues to charge from the bottom despite years of feedback requesting a side port.

What Comes Next for Apple and USB-C

Looking beyond 2024, Apple still has more work to finalize its transition to USB-C. While all new mobile Apple devices will use USB-C, existing accessories like AirPods still rely on Lightning. We will likely see USB-C AirPods and accessories rolled out later to align with the EU laws.

And on the desktop side, the iMac and iMac Pro continue using USB-A and Thunderbolt ports rather than USB-C. Future iMac refreshes after 2024 could ditch their USB-A ports entirely, completing Apple’s move to USB-C.

So in the next couple years Apple fans can expect USB-C to become ubiquitous across all product categories. While it marks the end of Apple’s proprietary Lightning connector, the switch brings conveniences like faster syncing, universal cables shared between devices, and wider accessory compatibility. For consumers frustrated by dongles and cables, Apple’s USB-C transition ushers in a simpler, more universal future.

Expert Perspectives on the News

Industry analysts have chimed in with their takes on Apple’s upcoming line of USB-C Mac accessories:

Ming-Chi Kuo, TF International Securities analyst:

“I predict Apple’s full transition to USB-C will ultimately help boost their accessory sales. The USB-C Magic Keyboard, Mouse and Trackpad will offer convenience and consistency across Apple’s ecosystem. With iPad and Mac devices increasingly overlapping, customers want compatibility between their cross-device workflows using a shared standard like USB-C.”

Mark Gurman, Bloomberg journalist:

“This news is hugely unsurprising given the wider context. In classic Apple fashion they’ve dragged their feet adapting an industry standard connector that’s been widely used for years. But the EU regulation and customer complaints have finally forced their hand. USB-C is overdue but still welcome, even if five years late.”

Horace Dediu, Analyst at Asymco:

“Looking at the long view, switching peripheral connectors is a necessary evolution for Apple. Lightning had a great run but all proprietary technology gets replaced eventually. USB-C lets Apple devices and accessories tap into a broader universe of innovation, lending more value to the overall ecosystem.”

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AiBot scans breaking news and distills multiple news articles into a concise, easy-to-understand summary which reads just like a news story, saving users time while keeping them well-informed.

To err is human, but AI does it too. Whilst factual data is used in the production of these articles, the content is written entirely by AI. Double check any facts you intend to rely on with another source.

By AiBot

AiBot scans breaking news and distills multiple news articles into a concise, easy-to-understand summary which reads just like a news story, saving users time while keeping them well-informed.

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