Future Apple MacBooks could be equipped with transparent glass buttons, which may be the next step in Apple's ongoing keyboard obsession. At least this is a reference to a recently published patent from the technology giant for glass keyboard keys.
The patent explains that with the glass key caps, each letter or symbol is printed on the underside and not on the top, as is common with current keyboards. This would help prevent the symbols from rubbing off over a long period of time, which means that your keys are as clear as the day you (hopefully) bought them for many years.
This isn't the only benefit Apple hopes for from this new type of keycap. The patent further discusses how glass buttons can also improve backlighting because their surfaces can effectively reflect and distribute light. This could result in more energy-efficient backlighting that saves battery life and ultimately allows you to use your laptop longer.
Using glass keys – or keys made of transparent ceramic or polymer – would lead to a surface that is much more difficult to scratch or damage, even over the long life cycles that laptops often experience. The edge of each key can have a different texture in the middle of the key to make it easier to find while typing.
The inherent strength of glass could also potentially make each keycap thinner than current MacBook keys without bending or bending under pressure. From Apple's point of view, that can only be a good thing.
One of the main purposes of the Butterfly keyboard was to create a more stable and durable keyboard that could withstand everyday use without wobbling or losing quality. While that didn't quite work out, it is clearly a goal that Apple has not yet given up on.
Apple is currently equipping its Macs with the revised Magic keyboard, which we believe represents a huge improvement over the problematic butterfly keyboard. Apple regularly applies for patents and there is no guarantee that its glass key cap idea will ever become a product. However, given the improvements that come with it, we keep our fingers crossed.