Apple's 2020 iPads could get the good keyboard from the 16-inch MacBook Pro

(Image credit: Laptop Mag)

We already expect Apple to update its MacBooks with the scissor keyboard used on the 16-inch MacBook Pro. Now a new report from Taiwanese-based DigiTimes claims that the improved keyboard could even find its way to the iPad and iPad Pro

Apple has sold its iPad tablets with a keyboard accessory for several years now. The Smart Keyboard is a useful piece of kit that essentially transforms the tablet into a laptop, but there are better options available to iPad owners. Apart from being expensive, the Smart Keyboard has very shallow keys, and was the most difficult to type on when we compared iPad Pro keyboards

Scissor switches would fix the biggest problem we have with the keyboard accessory, especially if the new keys are anything like those on the 16-inch MacBook Pro. To get you caught up, Apple's latest MacBook Pro ditched the uncomfortable, unreliable Butterfly keys for the same scissor switches Apple used on older laptops. We conducted a side-by-side keyboard comparison and the verdict was unanimous: the scissor keyboard offers a much better typing experience. 

The improved Smart Keyboard is expected to arrive alongside the iPad and iPad Pro in March of this year. The new accessory should not only be more comfortable to type on, but DigiTimes says the "glowing" keys will be backlit so non-touch typists can get work done in dark environments. 

Backlighting would be a useful feature for the iPad Pro's keyboard, but we're still waiting for a touchpad. If Apple expands iPadOS' limited cursor support and the Smart Keyboard gets a touchpad, then the super-powerful iPad Pro could be a proper laptop replacement. 

Speaking of laptops, reliable Apple analyst Ming-Chi Kuo predicts Apple will update the rest of its MacBooks with a scissor-style keyboard by the end of 2020. 

If Kuo and this new DigiTimes report are right, then the Butterfly keyboard is nearing extinction. 

Phillip Tracy

Phillip Tracy is the assistant managing editor at Laptop Mag where he reviews laptops, phones and other gadgets while covering the latest industry news. After graduating with a journalism degree from the University of Texas at Austin, Phillip became a tech reporter at the Daily Dot. There, he wrote reviews for a range of gadgets and covered everything from social media trends to cybersecurity. Prior to that, he wrote for RCR Wireless News covering 5G and IoT. When he's not tinkering with devices, you can find Phillip playing video games, reading, traveling or watching soccer.