Magic Numpad review
If you’re a lover of all things wireless, the chances are you’re using Apple’s wireless keyboard and Magic Trackpad. Unfortunately, with this setup you lack a traditional number pad. Should you feel the need for one, there is an alternative and its name is the Magic Numpad.
This set of three overlays with number and function buttons lets you turn the Magic Trackpad into a numeric keyboard with a space for trackpad gestures, a full numeric keyboard, or a numeric keyboard with configurable buttons for increased usability.
The films come with a pen, an application card, a cleaning cloth and a serial number card. Once you’ve cleaned your Magic Trackpad, affixing one of the thick, plastic Numpad films is simple (the material is supposedly bubble-resistant, but you still need to take care when applying the film).
With the film in place, the next task is to download and install the Numpad software, accessible via the link provided on the card, and tell the software which layout you’re using. Numpad functionality is turned on with a quick double tap of a toggle button at the top of the film. You can turn the layout off and revert to original Trackpad use even with the Magic Numpad film on it.
The Magic Numpad adds new features to Apple’s Magic Trackpad including additional function keys and customisable shortcut buttons
From the Numpad software you can quickly customise each button and use the provided pen to mark your shortcuts onto one of the film’s blank keys. You can even invoke a calculator with a single tap for quick calculations. Sounds play each time a key is pressed, but this can be turned off.
Swapping the films isn’t a difficult process but it might be best to pick one and stick to it to avoid getting dust and dirt on the back of the film. Trackpad control isn’t greatly impaired when using the films, however, scrolling does feel a little more sluggish, most likely due to friction between your fingers and the keys printed on the films.
Your first impression might be that the Magic Numpad is a trivial accessory, but after a few days of use it can quickly become indispensible. The price may seem a little high but bear in mind that you’re paying for software as well. It’s certainly cheaper than buying an additional number pad or, heaven forbid, reverting to a wired keyboard.