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Is Google Killing Off The Space Bar?

Michael Moore joined TechWeek Europe in January 2014 as a trainee before graduating to Reporter later that year. He covers a wide range of topics, including but not limited to mobile devices, wearable tech, the Internet of Things, and financial technology.

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New patent reveals plan to slim down laptop keyboards

Google could be set to introduce one of the most radical redesigns in computing history with a plan to do away with the most-used key on many people’s keyboards.

The search giant is planning a laptop that comes without a space bar on its keyboard, according to patent reports uncovered by Quartz, replacing it with an extended trackpad, the top of which would act as a substitute input key (pictured below).

Such a move will free up much-needed space (pun intended) and allow for the creation of smaller devices, the company believes. The design could be earmarked for upcoming Chromebooks.

google keyboardSpaced out?

The new extended trackpad design would act as a context-sensitive input device in order to decide what function to perform, for example, a tap whilst typing would add a space.

However, it’s not clear yet if this design will ever see the light of day, or whether it’s just creative thinking from Google. A company representative told Quartz that “prospective product announcements should not necessarily be inferred from our patents,” meaning we’ll just have to wait and see.

Slimly-built laptops have become highly sought-after in recent years as customers look for portability along with power.

Apple raised eyebrows across the world when it announced its thinnest-ever Macbook last month. The new device is just 13.1mm thick and weighs only 907g, thanks to a major redesign of nearly every component inside.

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