Apple has renewed the Magic Keyboard especially for the 24-inch iMac. Not only is it available in the same color as the iMac itself, the wireless keyboard now includes Touch ID.
Thanks to the fingerprint scanner, you can easily unlock your Mac, enter passwords and switch between users. Moreover, the keyboard can also be used on other M1 Macs, but it remains to be seen when the keyboard will be available separately. Below we list some interesting facts and answer questions about the new Keyboard.
- New Magic Keyboard 2021
- Available in 3 versions
- Magic Keyboard with Touch ID not standard
- Fingerprint scanner operation
- Features dedicated to Touch ID
- Also suitable for other M1 Macs
- Buy Magic Keyboard with Touch ID separately
New Magic Keyboard 2021
The design of the Magic Keyboard for Mac has remained more or less the same. The keyboard is wireless and rechargeable via the lighting port and has an ultra-compact design that leaves no millimetre unused. The scissor mechanism is very stable despite the keyboard being low.
To adapt the Magic Keyboard to today’s use, Apple has changed and/or added some keys. Below an overview:
- Touch ID or lock key ▸ replaces Eject key
- Globe Key: Also known as the “Emoji Key” to quickly access or use emojis as an fn key
- Spotlight key ▸ F4 ▸ replaces Launchpad shortcut
- Dictation key ▸ F5
- Do not disturb key ▸ F6
Because the 24-inch iMac is available in seven cheerful colors, Apple has also provided the accessories with extra color. Both the keyboard, Magic Mouse and Magic Trackpad come in the same color as the iMac.
Available in 3 versions
The Magic Keyboard 2021 is available in three versions:
- Magic Keyboard
- Magic Keyboard with Touch ID
- Magic Keyboard with Touch ID and Numeric Keypad
Magic Keyboard with Touch ID not standard
The Magic Keyboard with Touch ID is only available in combination with the ‘more expensive’ 24-inch iMac models, the entry-level model has a keyboard without a fingerprint scanner. If you prefer a keyboard with Touch ID with the entry-level model, you can upgrade it for an additional cost. In addition, with all 24-inch iMac models, you can also purchase the Magic Keyboard with Touch ID and numeric keypad for an additional cost.
Fingerprint scanner operation
Just like with Touch ID on an iPhone, iPad or MacBook, Apple’s fingerprint scanner is secured. When adding your fingerprint, it is stored in a secure part of the M1 chip. This secure enclave cannot be read in and ensures that all data remains on the Mac and cannot be ‘stolen’.
The scanner in the Magic Keyboard connects wirelessly to the Mac and scans the fingerprint. This is then sent encrypted to your Mac and compared by the M1 chip against previous cartridges.
Features dedicated to Touch ID
Thanks to the fingerprint scanner, you can easily unlock the Mac, enter passwords, make purchases, download apps, confirm changes, etc. Normally you have to enter your password for this, but thanks to the fingerprint scanner this is no longer necessary.
In addition, with the help of Touch ID, you can also quickly switch between different users who have their own user account on the iMac. The user scans his finger and immediately the user account is switched. Handy if several people use the Mac.
Also suitable for other M1 Macs
The Magic Keyboard with Touch ID is currently available exclusively with the 24-inch iMac. However, there are several Mac models that support this keyboard. As of macOS Big Sur 11.3, all Macs with an Apple Silicon processor, M1 chip, can pair and use the keyboard. This means that you can also use the keyboard in combination with a Mac mini.
The iPad Pro 2021 also has an M1 chip, unfortunately, it does not support the Magic Keyboard with Touch ID (for now).
Buy Magic Keyboard with Touch ID separately
Although Apple’s new keyboard is also suitable for other Macs, the Magic Keyboard with Touch ID is reserved exclusively for the 24-inch iMac for now. The keyboard is therefore not yet available separately.
Perhaps this will change in the future. When the iMac Pro appeared at the time, the Apple accessories in space gray were also exclusively available, a few months later they were still offered separately.