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on October 4, 2010
I received this trackpad as a gift and honestly, I wanted to sell it after the first day. It felt awkward and clumsy and I had some guilt over telling it's purchaser, "Yeah, it's great. Thanks so much for the gift..." (even though I was considering selling it on Craigslist the next day).

BUT, after a few days, I have really grown to love it.

That being said, here's what you can expect if you unshackle yourself from the comfort zone of mousedom:

Day One - You will hate this thing. It doesn't do what you want. The mouse is so much easier. Where's the receipt?

Day Two - Okay, staying away from the it a chance. Scrolling is easier and the damn scrollball never sticks and the bottom doesn't get gunked up like a mouse does.

Day Six - Three finger swipes for browsing the net? Loving it. Got more control now with some practice. Two finger tap right clicks. Four finger for Expose. Got it.

Day Seven - My hand knows what to do now. Everything is so smooth. I'm keeping this thing after all.

Moral to the story? Give it a chance. You just might love it.
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on August 4, 2010
I have a strong preference for touchpads over mice so I was pretty delighted upon hearing about this being released by Apple. I have another touchpad made by Adesso that I use with desktops, but it is wired and not nearly as nice or large as the Apple one.

This trackpad works exactly like the built-in one on the macbook pro. It's slim and very elegant looking. There is no lag like you get with wireless optical mice. The glass surface, however, has a bit of 'texture' to it unlike the macbook's trackpad which is shiny. It's almost like a matte finish to it which is ok as a perfectly shiny glass surface can stick a bit if your fingers are a little sweaty. (But if your fingers are dry, the shiny feels a little better :)

It's well constructed and seems sturdy. The top part that holds the battery feels cool like aluminum though I'm not sure if it is. But it's not cheap plastic. It has a nice solid feel and I'm extremely happy with it. I visited the local Apple store to try it out before buying, but they did not have it in yet. But I'm glad I went ahead and ordered it from Apple because it's exactly what I wanted. I will never use another mouse again!

When you get it, make sure that you update your OS software to get the trackpad drivers. It will work without the update but you won't be able to adjust it and features will be missing. You might have your computer on auto update in which case you don't need to worry about this. But if you're a weirdo like me and prefer to manually update, then keep this in mind. When the batteries die, I'll update this review to give a sense of how long the batteries last.
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on August 21, 2010
I bought the trackpad for my 2010 Mac Mini, which I use mainly as a media center appliance, with XBMC.

In this context the trackpad adds a lot of usability for the following reasons:

* I don't need a surface for the mouse anymore. So it's basically like another remote, sitting beside me on the couch.
* I no longer require to use the keyboard, for basic operations. Thanks to the gestures, I can switch between running applications (e.g. from XBMC to Finder) without the need of the keyboard. In fact, since I bought the trackpad I hardly use the keyboard at all.

Cons (same context):

* If you're holding the trackpad with your hand or operating it on a soft surface (like the couch) you can't use the click option, since it requires the trackpad to be sitting on a hard surface, like a desk. So you have to live with tapping for clicking operations.
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VINE VOICEon August 21, 2010
I've owned one of these since Apple released it, and under OS X 10.6, it was a decent mouse replacement for people used to the trackpads in their MacBooks, and I used it or didn't use it as whatever pointing device was convenient on my desk. It was fine, if not particularly compelling. With OS X Lion and the more pervasive inclusion of gestures into the operating system and Apple provided apps, the Magic Trackpad became the best way to do non-keyboard input with a Mac, and OS X Mountain Lion continues the trend with even more gestures.

Let's take the simple example of going backwards in my browser history. I'm afraid I've never gotten into the habit of using the command key equivalent to go backwards (it's command-[ ), so I would have zipped my mouse pointer up to the left arrow button on the toolbar and clicked it. Compare with the gestural equivalent of this: drag my index and middle fingers across the trackpad to the right. Bam, it's done and with the beautiful solid page drag of modern Safari actually looks like you are pushing the old page off the stack to reveal the last page. So much faster and so much more natural.

Of course, old habits die hard and despite the obvious superiority of the two finger drag gesture, I found myself still going for that button I've spent nearly twenty years pressing. The solution, I went to Safari's "Customize Toolbar.." command in the "View" menu and dragged the left and right buttons off my Safari toolbar. Now I have no choice but to use the new way. Problem solved and the new habit is rapidly engrained.

Similarly, one of the features of Lion I just love is full screen apps. iOS has shown that there are times when you want an immersive experience unitasking on one app. Like when I'm using iPhoto do do some serious photo categorizing, or when I want to set up Google Chrome for my kids to browse without worrying about them getting confused by task switching. However, once you are in a full screen app mode, many of the previous methods for switching between apps such as clicking on the dock or just clicking on another window are not in your face available. Now the three fingered index, middle and ring fingers drag makes it seamless to slip out of unitasking mode and back to the hectic world of multiple windows.

One gesture I'm still getting used to on Mountain Lion is the two finger from the edge swipe which slides the OS X Notification Center in from the right. Assuming notifications are useful, this will be useful, but the gesture itself seems a bit unnatural as you have to bump your fingertips over the blunt edge of the Trackpad. In the long term we'll see if it makes my life easier, for many people it will.

These are just examples of the many things that are impossible with a traditional mouse or trackball, sort of doable with Apple's own Magic Mouse and once internalized the most natural and seemingly intuitive actions with the Magic Trackpad or with the built in trackpads to a MacBook. And, I have every reason to expect that Apple will continue to gradually level us up, and accustom us to ever more subtle gestures as both the gestural language and users become more sophisticated.

The hardware is classic Apple, elegant in its minimalism, yet not without its flaws. The number one flaw is that it cannot be used to mouse click when not laying on a flat surface. Sometimes I just want to lean back on my chair with my input device in my lap, thigh or balanced on a chair arm. Because there is no "button" on a Magic Trackpad, clicks are registered by pressing the whole device down through its little rubber feet, which necessarily have to be pressed up against something flat. Thus no acrobatic use. Also the edge is a bit too blunt and scrapes the thumb a bit.

Battery life is good, I typically go a good month of daily use between switching out the rechargeables, although I haven't kept close tabs, usually just switching them when I feel bored. I will admit to buying Apple's own pricey Battery Charger but the budget minded might try Sanyo Eneloop 2 battery charger with at least 4 total batteries so that there will always be one pair in the charger and one in the device.

In conclusion, this is not just a flat mouse. The addition of gestures make it something more, allowing a user interaction that alternative devices cannot achieve. It does take an effort on the user's part to fully utilize these new capabilities. It would be easy to treat this as a decent enough mouse and wonder why one would use a trackpad when a high precision and cheaper mouse could be used in the same desk space. If you buy this item, commit yourself to breaking old habits and gaining new powers.
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on September 26, 2010
Video review of Apple's Magic Trackpad.
Shown in the video is the Magic Trackpad from all angles, as well as explaining how it's used.
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on November 16, 2010
I have used nothing but Macs. since the late 80s when I was a design student. Having stated that, I am most certainly neither a macophile nor a particular fan or CEO Steve Jobs, I consider my opinions therefore objective and as truthful as they can be. As a designer I find mice generally too distant, too lacking in the feeling of being connected to my designs. Dare I say it, it's rather like wearing a c****m during sex. I have therefore preferred to create on a laptop instead and use the in-built trackpad - the obvious problem there, however. is the screen size... never a clear winner. Recently I bought my first iMac for my office (SUPERB product!) and one of the driving factors behind that decision was undoubtedly the arrival of the 'magic track pad'. What can I say? This is undoubtedly one of the top three pieces of hardware ever devised and manufactured, and I could well argue it is number one! Can you tell me a better piece of hardware? If so leave your idea in the comments section please, I'd be keen to hear what can better this. Back to the review, it is typically stylish, refined, elegant and ergonomically perfect all of which we have come to expect from the designers at Apple and their Chinese manufacturers - so all that is said as a foregone conclusion. However, I have to say that this time the engineers have outdone themselves because this is super fast, super efficient and just Sooo smooth. It's like pouring treacle through Paul Desmond's alto saxophone. I use it with 'Illustrator' and it is phenomenal especially on the 'two-finger mode'. In conjunction with the fast processors in the iMac you can blow up design to like 4000% and using the two-finger mode to go around and check the finer points of the design it is thoroughly seamless, like an extension of my brain. Scarily enough it reminds me of the film Minority Report... Nothing more to add, instead of to suggest you go buy one for yourself and significantly improve both your life and your hand-eye co-ordination skills. You will not regret this purchase.
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on May 4, 2012
I bought this product for the sole purpose of using on a PC running Windows 7. I love the gestures and trackpad on my MacBook but only have the option for a Windows PC at work. I followed the basic instructions from a simple Google search to install the drivers and then used the Magic TrackPad Control program to better enable gestures. The entire setup was done in less than 10 minutes and I could not be happier.
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on April 20, 2011
Am using this on a Thinkpad x200T running Windows 7. I googled and found Windows drivers that sometimes work, along with a free program that lets you choose which options you want to enable, by setting a reg key. there's a low cost program that gives a nice UI to do the same thing, if you need it.

Note that for Windows I get a subset of the fancy features. I can scroll and pan, with two fingers, but I don't get more than that. oh well.

I use this product either when I'm out in a cafe and I want to save my wrist, or if I'm at home and need a change from the mouse.

I hadn't done much trackpadding before, but now that I am, I note that:
* most of the time it works great, for email and browsing.
* for dragging and dropping, it's clumsy
* it takes getting used to overall

Apple has tried a few things to make dragging and dropping easier. There are a few features to help, although they take time to learn and I'm still not thrilled with them. But frankly I don't do a ton of drag and drop, and when I do, I can always reach for the mouse or the "nipple" button on my thinkpad.

Update: starting a few months ago, the trackpad became quite temperamental. It has good weeks and bad weeks. A strange thing is that I had one week where it turned out to be a low battery, but there either wasn't a low battery indicator or it didn't come on. The trackpad would work for 10 minutes and then disconnect. Outside of the battery life issue, I've seen this trackpad get squirrely with Win 7. Generally a reboot will do the trick, but not always. It's tempermental--wouldn't recommend it for a "must always work" piece of hardware, or for a novice w/o access to a friend's support.
Stopped working again. The green light comes on but then it doesn't connect.

Basically don't assume you can use this reliably on Windows.

Alternatively, if you like troubleshooting your configuration, you'll LOVE this product on Windows.
Dropped it from a low height and it broke in several places. I think it'll still work but naturally I can't get it to connect to Windows--again.
OK it connects to windows again for reasons I don't understand. and the larger cracked area that showed up mysteriously still has touch control. The dropped on corner doesn't, but it's not a big area. I can use this once again... for now.
review image review image
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on November 3, 2011
I've owned one for about a year now, using it primarily for my media mac mini hooked to my TV. For this kind of use it is perfect. You can sit back on the couch and mouse around without a problem. Gestures are nice, works just like the one on the macbook.

A little while ago I decided to give it a go at replacing my mouse for work. (I'm a computer programmer). I gave it 3 weeks of use 8 hours a day, after that my arm hurt too badly to continue to use it. It really stresses wrist and fingers more than a regular mouse. Also a mouse is just plain more accurate. Making small movements to select text or whatever is not difficult, but it's easier with a mouse. Dragging and dropping with this thing is a pain both literary and figuratively. You can press and click and drag, but the click is too hard, you can also tap and drag with a different finger, but it's tough to get used to.

Overall good for occasional use, or for use on the couch. For everyday use, this can't replace a mouse.
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VINE VOICEon September 17, 2010

I'm going to keep this review relatively short because the main thing I can tell you about the Magic Trackpad is that when I'm somewhere where I don't have it I absolutely miss it and wish I had it with me. It makes interacting with my computer better, faster, and easier. It also requires such little movement that there is virtually no stress to my hand and wrist. I use mine with my almost 4 year old MacBook Pro. My MacBook Pro has a built-in trackpad but it is one of the older ones. The two main differences that I notice immediately when switching between the two are that the Magic Trackpad is infinitely smoother and easier to slide your fingers across thanks to its glass surface and that the momentum scrolling is INCREDIBLE and very useful.

1) Massive touch area
2) Smooth glass surface makes moving across the surface effortless
3) Multitouch. Apple's built-in gestures and those available from third party software are great.
4) Momentum scrolling. WOW. Once you use this you'll wonder how you lived without it. It is that great, especially when you're in an email inbox.

1) Battery Life. I've already changed the batteries in mine once. Maybe that's why they released that battery charger the same day.

UPDATE: I originally received this product on August 5. Around the middle of September I noticed that it had become harder to click the left button. At first I thought that it was me, perhaps I was holding my hand in a different manner or something. As the days went by I realized it wasn't me. I flipped over the device and tried pressing the buttons (they are the feet of the device if you have not seen this in person). The right button clicked normally but the left button was definitely broken. The difference was completely obvious when you were clicking them directly. The normal operation of this device is that you can simply press the entire surface of the device down and it in turn depresses one of the feet buttons. This makes it harder to notice the difference.

Amazon expedited my return. They immediately sent me a new trackpad which I'm happily using now and I'm sending the old one back. I am still leaving my rating at 5 stars because I will assume I simply received a defective model. As I said the right foot/button was still working perfectly. I will update this if I see the problem again.

UPDATE 12-3-2012
Wow, I can't believe it's been two years since I originally purchased this! The replacement worked great and I haven't had any other problems with it. In fact, I finally purchased a second one for use at home because I was getting annoyed having to use a mouse at home when I used the trackpad all day at work! My 5 star review still stands. This is a wonderful device and a pleasure to use.
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