During the launch of Microsoft’s new Surface Neo, one of the main attractions of the device was the physical keyboard that was attached at the back of the screen. When you flip the keyboard, it also gives you an extra a third of the screen to be used for various purposes.
This screen can also act as a large touch bar for the Surface Neo. This addition of keyboard and a large touch bar make Surface Neo feel like a regular laptop.
Recently Microsoft published a document regarding one of the ways of using the keyboard. This document was published this week and filled in 2018 for the patent of the keyboard.
The document was titled “Mechanical Keyboard Overlay For The Touch Screen.” This keyboard has a feature that if you press a key on the keyboard when it is attached on top of the screen, it will transfer the moment to the touchscreen on the other side of the keyboard.
Mayank Parmar described the Surface Neo Laptop as ” its has Windows 10X and supports a magnetic keyboard attached to the back of the screen that covers two-thirds of the screen and one-third extra screen attached to the keyboard can be used for various purposes like certain apps or emojis”.
The patent of the keyboard on the Surface Neo says that a normal laptop has a mechanical keyboard, but touchscreen presents a virtual keyboard that is not as good as a mechanical keyboard, and this patent handles the problem by providing a mechanical keyboard capable of being used on a touchscreen.
This is not a new idea as Sony Ericsson P800 mobile with touchscreen and also a cover when flipped has 12 key traditional number pad used the same tech back in 2002. There is, however, certain advancement than the previous this type of keyboard like the use of transparent plastics to mimic backlit keys or highlight specific keys through the keycap and some other.
Microsoft’s Surface Neo and Surface Duo will be available form Q4 2020. So it’s a long wait till which we can test the keyboard out.