Update on 4/29/2021: A support document from Apple hosted on its website clarifies this somewhat, noting that the old Magic Keyboard will technically work with the new model. Due to the small size difference between the new devices, “The Magic Keyboard may not fit snugly when closed.” Apple’s new Magic Keyboard for the 12.9-inch iPad Pro has changes that make it a good fit for the new model, but if you’re not picky about fit, both keyboards will be functional.
Despite its seemingly unwavering commitment to using the Lightning port in iPhones, Apple isn’t usually squeamish about ending support for old accessories and products when it announces the latest, greatest version of something.
That’s especially evident this week, as it’s been revealed that the new 12.9-inch iPad Pro doesn’t work with the Magic Keyboard Apple made for its predecessor a year ago.
French website iGeneration was first to break the news, explaining that while the 2020 and 2021 12.9-inch iPad Pro are largely similar, the new one is 0.5mm thicker. The site claimed to have seen Apple documentation stating that the older Magic Keyboard would not be supported. AppleInsider later claimed to have received confirmation directly from Apple that this is the case.
However, it is important to note that the Apple Store website claims that the new Magic Keyboard works with the older iPad Pro models. Also, this only affects the new 12.9-inch iPad Pro; the 11-inch model still works with the previous Magic Keyboard.
That’s not the only legacy support issue with Apple’s new products this week. While the divisive Siri Remote for the Apple TV 4K from 2017 included a gyroscope and accelerometer, the redesigned remote for the new Apple TV 4K lacks those features. This change wouldn’t affect the TV viewing experience with that device, but it does matter for games. Certain Apple TV games used those sensors to enable iPhone-like inputs and gameplay experiences.
That said, Apple has added support for the PlayStation 4, PlayStation 5, Xbox One, and Xbox Series controllers to the Apple TV platform, and while all Apple Arcade games must run on Apple TV, a large part of it requires special gamepads. to do this. Apple may see efforts to make games playable with its own remote control a dead end and may look to those more traditional controllers for support in the future.
Frame image by Samuel Axon