A new patent application coming to light on Thursday is providing clues into Apple's apparent interest in illuminated touchpad technology. The patent specifically hints at a touchpad that lights up and interacts with and responds to varying degrees of pressure.
All told, Apple says the technology provides "improved feedback mechanisms for touch pads." In the abstract, here's how Apple describes that which it is evidently tinkering with:
The present invention pertains to improved feedback mechanisms for touch pads. One aspect relates to devices capable of illuminating the touch sensitive surface of the touch pad. Another aspect relates to methods for providing visual feedback at the touch pad.
Apple's "Illuminated Touchpad" patent was filed more than four months ago, but only this week did it become public knowledge. In other words, we may see this technology in play very, very soon.