Lion and the Magic Trackpad Revisited

24 July, 2011 09:11PM · 2 minute read

As I had previously posted I see that Lion really does need a touch input device like the Magic Mouse and preferably the Magic Trackpad for a good part of its usability improvements to be realised. I even suggested Apple may offer the Magic Trackpads at a discount or bundle them with the purchase of Lion.  Alas, neither has come true and I suppose it was wishful thinking on my part (no, I’m not immune to that).

Having used Lion now with a Magic Mouse for several weeks I thought a quick update would be useful.  Before we begin: the Magic Trackpad is still the best option for the gestures, but the Magic Mouse is still useful.

A Magic Mouse allows: Tap to Zoom (but not Pinch to Zoom), Swiping between pages, Swiping between apps, and bring-up Mission Control.

In addition a Magic Trackpad allows: Pinch to Zoom, bring-up Launchpad, App Expose, Show Desktop, Dictionary lookup, and a clever tap and drag without using a tap lock.

Not being able to access the Launchpad is a big deal for me - as is the show desktop.  On Snow Leopard I had been using Better Touch Tool to customise my Magic Mouse with gestures to do both of those things, however I’ve been trying with Lion for several weeks to live without it, I’m thinking I can stick with Apple’s restrictions and buy a Magic Trackpad, or stick with the Magic Mouse and go back to Better Touch Tool.

The argument against the trackpad comes back more to the fact I’m more personally comfortable with the mouse and I’ve become used to the Magic Mouses low profile and unusual feel. For many people that have used a laptop with a trackpad it’s a no-brainer, but again Lion really needs a Magic Mouse/Trackpad to really shine.