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Will Apple's Magic Trackpad Be Any Good For Gaming?

by Phil Kollar on Jul 27, 2010 at 03:40 PM

Today Apple announced a new device called the "Magic Trackpad." Essentially, it's a standalone trackpad like the kind you'd find on a laptop or Macbook. Since it's on its own, though, it's meant to be used on desktop computers instead of a traditional mouse.

Seeking Alpha has an interesting write-up on the new device with quotes from Apple, and their headline gets right to the heart of the matter: Some people sees the trackpad as a full-on replacement for the mouse. Says the Apple rep quoted in the story:

"People love the trackpad. People love those characteristics."

Here's where I ask a big question: They do? Maybe I'm totally alone and crazy in this, but even when we're not talking about gaming stuff, I hate using a trackpad. I always carry a mouse in my laptop bag because I don't want to be bothered with the clumsy slowness of most laptop trackpads. I should probably note here that I don't use a Macbook, and maybe that makes all the difference.

But when it comes to gaming, the Magic Trackpad raises an even bigger concern. Can this thing work as well as a mouse? Will my StarCraft 2 movements be as smooth and purposeful without a traditional mouse? Could it provide some new opportunities for controlling PC/Mac games, or is it destined to make the process more frustrating?

To their credit, Apple says they want to give consumers the choice. They recognize that "Some operations are better for a mouse." But the Seeking Alpha article speculates that the mouse as we know it "may be destined to become a precision tool that professions such as designers use." Will gamers also be among the rare individuals using this archaic peripheral? I think that sounds crazy, but what's your take?