Apple Magic Keyboard with Touch ID

Apple has finally decided to start selling its Magic Keyboard With Touch ID as a standalone product starting at $149. However, the Touch ID feature only works on M1 Macs, which means the main selling point won’t work for many Mac owners.

Which Models Will Work With Touch ID?

Currently, the only M1 Macs are the MacBook Air (M1, 2020), MacBook Pro (13-inch, M1, 2020), iMac (24-inch, M1, 2021), and Mac mini (M1, 2020). If you have one of those, you’ll be able to take full advantage of the Magic Keyboard With Touch ID and all of its features. This applies to the Magic Keyboard with Touch ID and the Magic Keyboard with Touch ID and Numeric Keypad.

If you’re sitting on an Intel Mac, you can absolutely still use the keyboard, but you won’t be able to take advantage of the Touch ID. If you want a nice keyboard, though, you’re better off saving money and getting the traditional Magic Keyboard or Magic Keyboard with Numeric Keypad, as they offer the same features, just without the Touch ID that won’t work on your device anyway.

Apple lists the Touch ID keyboards as “for Mac models with Apple silicon.” The system requirements also list “Mac with Apple silicon using macOS 11.4 or later,” so the company is not trying to trick anyone into buying one unnecessarily.


This makes sense, as the keyboard was originally only available as part of the M1 iMac package, which is definitely one of the best Mac desktops to consider, so the feature is targeted at people with M1-toting devices.

Should You Care About Touch ID on Mac?

Touch ID on Mac is a fantastic feature for authenticating logins and making Apple Pay purchases, but it’s not necessarily going to change your life. With that said, if you have one of the Mac models that support the feature, and you’re in the market for a new keyboard, it’s worth considering, as it can speed up some processes.

The Best Desktop Macs of 2021

Best Desktop Mac
24-inch iMac M1 (Four ports, 2021)
Best Budget Desktop Mac
M1 Mac mini (2020)
External USB 3.2 SSD
Samsung T7 Touch 1TB Portable SSD
Best for Photo/Video Editing
M1 Mac mini (2020)
24-inch 4K Monitor
LG UltraFine 4K 24-inch Monitor
Best for Students
24-inch iMac M1 (Two ports, 2021)
Best for High-End Performance
Mac Pro
Dave LeClair Dave LeClair
Dave LeClair is the News Editor for How-To Geek. He started writing about technology more than 10 years ago. He's written articles for publications like MakeUseOf, Android Authority, Digitial Trends, and plenty of others. He's also appeared in and edited videos for various YouTube channels around the web.
Read Full Bio »

The above article may contain affiliate links, which help support How-To Geek.