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Apple Magic Mouse vs Trackpad (2022): Which One Should You Get for Your Mac?

Despite their different form factors, the Apple Magic Mouse 2 (otherwise known as the Apple Magic Mouse A1296) shares a lot of similarities with the Apple Magic Trackpad. For one thing, both have Multi-Touch gestures, and they connect wirelessly. 

Choosing between these pointing peripherals really boils down to preference, but there’s more to it than that. While the Magic Mouse is more affordable, the Magic Trackpad has more features. Then there’s the matter of your setup, particularly if they’ll fit like a glove on your desk.

Apple Magic Mouse vs Trackpad Comparison Chart

ModelApple Magic MouseApple Magic Trackpad
 Apple Magic Mouse vs TrackpadApple Magic Mouse vs Trackpad
PriceCheck Price at Apple.comCheck Price at Apple.com
Multi-TouchYesYes
Force TouchNoYes
ConnectivityBluetoothBluetooth
Battery Life1 month or more1 month or more
Charging PortLightningLightning
Dimensions (W x H x D)2.25″ x 0.85″ x 4.47″6.3″ x 0.19″ to 0.43″ x 4.52″
Weight0.22 lbs0.51 lbs
ColorWhite, BlackWhite, Black

Design and Build

The Apple Magic Mouse doesn’t take up as much space, making it the better option for crowded desks than the Apple Magic Trackpad.

Apple Magic Mouse vs Trackpad Design and Build
While portable, the small size and non-ergonomic design of the Apple Magic Mouse (in photo) make it uncomfortable to use for long periods.

From a more traditional perspective, a Magic Mouse and Keyboard with Numeric Keypad is par for the course. After all, you get a full-size keyboard paired with a highly functional mouse that way. However, going for the Magic Trackpad instead in this case may not be feasible because of its sheer size. The better option would be to combine it with the slimmed down Magic Keyboard. Needless to say, how much space you have on your desk factors into the whole thing. 

On that note, the Magic Mouse measures 2.25” x 0.85” x 4.47” in width, height and depth, respectively. Meanwhile, the Magic Trackpad clocks in at 6.3” x 0.19” to 0.43” (height gradually increases from the bottom to the top) x 4.52”. Also, the Magic Mouse weighs 0.22 lbs, whereas the Magic Trackpad is at 0.51 lbs.

It’s worth mentioning that the Magic Mouse doesn’t exactly have the best ergonomics. It has a smooth top, and it’s virtually flat without any side grips. Sure, that makes it visually appealing, but considering how compact it is, you’ll likely have to make do with a finger grip. If you have small hands, you might get away with a claw grip, though.

For the record, both use Bluetooth to establish a wireless connection. Both come in white or black.

Click here for our Logitech MX Keys Mini vs. Apple Magic Keyboard comparison.

Usage and Gestures

In contrast to the Apple Magic Mouse, the Apple Magic Trackpad has more gestures, plus it has Force Touch support.

Apple Magic Mouse vs Trackpad Usage and Gestures
The Apple Magic Mouse (left) has its charging port on the bottom, so it can’t be used while plugged in, unlike the Apple Magic Trackpad (right), which has its port at the back.

It goes without saying that how each one is used is different from the other. Without going too much into detail, the Magic Mouse is a mouse, and the Magic Trackpad is a trackpad (excuse the redundancy). The point is, you may have to use your entire arm to move a mouse, but with a trackpad, you pretty much only need your fingers.

As noted, both have Multi-Touch gestures. First off, you can swipe with two fingers to the left to go back or to the right to go forward. Also, you can swap between full apps by using three fingers instead. 

However, the Magic Trackpad has the edge in this regard. Unlike the Magic Mouse, it lets you pinch to zoom in or out, as well as rotate images. More importantly, it’s the only one of the two that has Force Touch. In other words, it’s pressure sensitive and has haptic feedback. This opens up a number of additional functions, including Look Up and Quick Look.

Another advantage the Magic Trackpad has is its charging port is at the back, so it can be used even when it’s plugged in. Unfortunately, the Magic Mouse has its Lightning port on its bottom, so it can’t be used while charging. At any rate, both devices are rated to last for at least a month on a single charge. Put simply, this is a non-issue with the Magic Mouse as long as you keep it charged regularly.

Pricing and Value

The Apple Magic Mouse is easier on the budget, but it’s less functional than the Apple Magic Trackpad.

Apple Magic Mouse vs Trackpad Pricing and Value
A closer look at the two variants of the Mac Pro (in photo).

Between these pointing devices, the Magic Mouse is more affordable. That makes it appealing to a wider audience, including the budget-oriented. Also, Apple throws it in for free with every Mac desktop, so you can potentially save a lot more cash.

On the other hand, the Magic Trackpad can be bundled with a Mac, but it’ll cost you extra. As a seperate purchase, you’ll have to fork over a couple of hundred bucks more to complete your setup.

Verdict

You can’t go wrong with either the Apple Magic Mouse or Trackpad, and it’s better to decide which one to get based on your preferences.

To sum things up, the Apple Magic Mouse is better in terms of portability, and its size makes it more suitable for desks with limited space. It’s also more functional than your run-of-the-mill mouse, thanks to its Multi-Touch support. That said, the Apple Magic Trackpad offers even more functionality because of its additional gestures and Force Touch. On top of that, it’s better for uninterrupted productivity simply because it can be used while charging.

FAQs

📌 Between the Apple Magic Mouse 1 vs. 2, what’s the difference?

The Apple Magic Mouse 1 uses two AA batteries, while the Apple Magic Mouse 2 has a built-in battery and recharges via a Lightning port. Elsewhere, the two are pretty similar.

📌 What’s the difference between the Apple Magic Mouse and Trackpad?

That depends on which pointing device you prefer. However, it should be noted that the Apple Magic Mouse is more portable, while the Apple Magic Trackpad is more functional, owing to its extra gestures.

📌 Which is better for carpal tunnel syndrome, the Apple Magic Mouse or Trackpad?

Arguably, the Apple Magic Trackpad is better for carpal tunnel syndrome because it doesn’t need you to move your wrist that much. That isn’t saying much compared to the Apple Magic Mouse, though, as it lacks ergonomics.

📌 Does the Apple Magic Trackpad have Force Touch?

Yes, the Apple Magic Trackpad features Force Touch support, allowing you to trigger functions like Quick Look and Look Up.

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Vincent Lanaria

Senior Editor, researcher and writer passionate about running, cooking, and how technology mixes with the two.