In March, with the launch of the Magic Keyboard, Apple added proper mouse and trackpad support for the iPad with iPadOS 13.4.
Now TechCrunch reports that Microsoft is working on a version of Office for iPad optimised for the pointing devices, to be released in Fall this year.
With Apple increasingly positioning the iPad as a productivity device, the arrival of the feature should be a hero app for the tablet.
Most apps which use standard iPad UI elements would be automatically upgraded to mouse support, while those who use custom elements such as Office for iPad will need some but not too much work.
“We set out to design the cursor in a way that retains the touch-first experience without fundamentally changing the UI,” Apple SVP Craig Federighi says. “So customers who may never use a trackpad with their iPad won’t have to learn something new, while making it great for those who may switch back and forth between touch and trackpad.”
“Many iPad gestures on the trackpad are analogous to those on the Mac, so you don’t have to think about them or relearn anything. However, they respond in a different, more immediate way on iPad, making everything feel connected and effortless,” Federighi said.