Are Apple keyboards, with only a delete key, less efficient in making deletions than conventional keyboards with both a backspace and a delete key?

I have been using a Windows desktop at home and my office. Although I have never had a laptop, I have been planning to buy an Apple laptop for use when I travel. However, I recently used an Apple and found its keyboard, in one particular way, to be inferior to the standard keyboards that I have been accustomed to using. Do you agree?

A conventional keyboard has two keys to make deletions. The backspace key deletes characters to the left of the cursor. The delete key deletes characters to the right of the cursor. In contrast, the Apple keyboard has only one key to make deletions. It is the delete key and it deletes characters to the left of the cursor. It appears that if I want to delete characters to the right of the cursor, there is no way to do that directly and simply. Am I correct about that? I must either use a second key or I must first highlight the text and then delete it.

Using a non-Apple conventional keyboard, it is also possible to delete an entire word and one adjacent space in only two strokes by using a combination of the control key and the delete key. The same can be done in the other direction using the control key and the backspace key. How would these two types of deletion most efficiently be done with an Apple keyboard?

The reality seems to be that two keys to delete can operate more efficiently, in more directions, than only one (Apple). Do you agree that the Apple keyboard is less efficient in making deletions than the conventional keyboard when using Word software? What is the best way to get around that inefficiency in a MacBookPro? If there is no way around it, should this discourage me from getting an Apple since I do lots of word processing and deletions?

Does the Apple keyboard have any advantages over the conventional keyboard that I should be aware of?

  • Asked about:  Apple Wireless Keyboard

27 Answers from the Community

  • To simply delete things from the right of the cursor you press function (fn) then the delete key on the Mac. To delete a whole word from the left of the cursor in a non-apple word application (MS Word, PPT, Excel etc.) you press Command + Delete. In apps like Pages, Numbers and Keynote command+delete will delete the whole line but using option+delete will delete the word only. Option+delete will also work in word etc. as well. I believe that the apple keyboard and the PC/conventional keyboard is at the same level. Each have their weaknesses and each have their strengths. For me the apple keyboard is easier to use because of the keys and their style and I don't really like the 'conventional keyboard' but that is just me. Like I said use command+delete or option+delete. There is always a way around things. Do not get discourage by something so small. You could also use the arrow keys ... Advantages for me is that it is just easier to use. It is also very good looking and looks great with the backlight keyboard on!! It also has much more useful function keys (f1, f2, f3 etc.) than a PC keyboard. I hope this helped :) BUY A MAC!!! BUY A MAC!!! hahaha.

  • When zooming in on the picture i very clearly see both delete keys.

  • The only way around the very annoying missing DEL key, which only UK typists seem to miss, is Fn plus backspace. (Apple keyboards also have the @ and " signs swopped over - they are in the opposite place on a UK keyboard but I haven't found a cure for this. Also, where is the INSERT key from a UK keyboard?)

    The answer to the other correspondent's question "How do I make a screen shot with the Print Screen button also missing" is that you hold down CMD plus Caps plus 3, (or CMD plus Caps plus 4 if you prefer, depending on how big an area of the screen you want captured in your screen shot).

  • I adore the Apple keyboard and just wanted to address the question regarding the print screen (the full keyboard does have both the delete key and the backspace - only the bluetooth small form factor one does away with the backspace requiring you to use the fn and delete for this). with the Apple you can not only print screen but with the use of the Cmd & Shift & number 3 buttons your cursor changes to a crosshair and from there you just use your mouse/trackpad to draw a box of what you want to take a screen-grab of. This is far better then the print-screen or the Alt & print screen button on Windows as you can take a screenshot of the part you need rather than the whole screen or the whole application window. I normally have lots of applications open and I do not want the screenshot to include bits that are irrelevant. Yes, I suppose i could take a screenshot in Windows and then open it with another program to cut out all around what I need but it is so much easier with Apple!

  • Like in many other areas of human activity, typing on a keyboard takes some getting used to it...after muscle memory sets in, efficiency levels are comparable to the previous situation, and some time it's even higher...

    I'm also new to MacBook Pro keyboards and don't find them particularly more challenging that any other change I've gone through in my almost 30 years of using computer keyboards of all kinds.

    In short, it's just a matter of getting used to the new environment.

  • Nope. Just as easy to use.

  • get the delete in the forward direction hit the FN+delete key. It's very easy and very effective.