How to Connect a Magic Keyboard to Your iPad or iPad Pro

Pairing the standalone Magic Keyboard with Touch ID to your tablet

What to Know

  • The Touch ID feature does not work with iPads, only M1 Macs.
  • You can connect a Magic Keyboard with Touch ID to any iPad or iPad Pro.
  • To connect: Turn the keyboard on, then open Settings > Bluetooth > Magic Keyboard.

This article explains how to connect the Magic Keyboard with Touch ID to an iPad or iPad Pro.

This article is about the Magic Keyboard with Touch ID that was first available with the M1 iMac and can also be purchased separately. The Magic Keyboard for iPad, a keyboard case that’s designed for use with iPad Air and iPad Pro, is a different device.

How Do I Connect My Magic Keyboard to an iPad?

The Magic Keyboard with Touch ID is an update of the original Magic Keyboard that’s pretty similar to the original, except it has a Touch ID button. This keyboard originally shipped with the first M1 iMac, but it’s fully compatible with all M1 Macs and can also connect to your iPad, iPad Air, or iPad Pro.

While the Magic Keyboard with Touch ID is compatible with iPads, the Touch ID feature only works with M1 Macs. This feature does not work with any iPad, including the M1 iPad Pro. The keyboard itself connects and works in other respects, but it is not compatible with the Touch ID feature on iPads and does not add the Touch ID feature to the M1 iPad Pro that has no built-in fingerprint sensor.

Here’s how to connect a Magic Keyboard with Touch ID to an iPad:

  1. Turn on your Magic Keyboard by flipping the power switch.

    The Magic Keyboard power switch turned on.
  2. Open Settings on your iPad, and tap Bluetooth.

    Bluetooth highlighted in iPad settings.
  3. Tap Magic Keyboard in the OTHER DEVICES section.

    Magic Keyboard highlighted in the OTHER DEVICES Bluetooth section.

    If Bluetooth is off, tap the toggle and wait for your iPad to discover the keyboard.

  4. When the Magic Keyboard moves to the MY DEVICES section, it’s ready to use.

    A Magic Keyboard with Touch ID connected to an iPad Pro.

How to Disconnect a Magic Keyboard From an iPad

You can use your Magic Keyboard with multiple devices by manually pairing each time you want to switch, or by first pairing to your iPad, and then plugging it into your Mac with a Lightning cable. It will automatically connect to your Mac, and you can then unplug the cable. If you turn off Bluetooth on your iPad, you can avoid any potential conflicts from using this trick to use a Magic keyboard with multiple devices without manually pairing each time.

To turn off Bluetooth, just follow steps 2-3 from the previous section, and tap the Bluetooth toggle. That will temporarily turn off Bluetooth and disconnect the keyboard. When you turn Bluetooth back on later, the keyboard and any other Bluetooth devices will automatically connect.

If you want a more permanent disconnection, you can have the iPad forget your keyboard. The keyboard will no longer connect to your iPad, and you will have to reconnect it using the process described in the previous section if you want to use the keyboard and iPad together again in the future.

Here’s how to disconnect a Magic Keyboard from an iPad:

  1. Open Settings, and tap Bluetooth.

    Bluetooth highlighted in iPad settings.
  2. Tap the info (i) icon that’s located to the right of the Magic Keyboard entry in the MY DEVICES section.

    The (i) icon highlighted on the same line as Magic Keyboard.
  3. Tap Forget This Device.

    Forget This Device highlighted in iPad Bluetooth settings.

    If you select Disconnect, the keyboard will only disconnect temporarily. It will reconnect automatically later.

  4. Tap Forget Device.

    Forget Device highlighted in Bluetooth settings on iPad.
  5. When your Magic Keyboard appears in the OTHER DEVICES section, it’s no longer paired to your iPad. To use them together in the future, repeat the connection process described above.

    A Magic Keyboard disconnected from an iPad in Bluetooth settings.

Why Doesn’t the Magic Keyboard Touch ID Feature Work With iPads?

The Touch ID feature of the Magic Keyboard is only designed to work with M1 Macs. That means you can use it with an M1 iMac, Mac mini, or Macbook Air, and use the fingerprint sensor to log in, pay for things through Apple Pay, and other related features.

When the keyboard is connected to any other device, the Touch ID button is not enabled. That means it can’t provide input to the Touch ID feature on any iPad that has a built-in fingerprint sensor, and it doesn’t add Touch ID to the M1 iPad Pro that doesn’t have any fingerprint sensor at all.

While the M1 iPad Pro doesn’t support Touch ID, even if the Magic Keyboard is connected, the iPad Pro does include the faster and more secure Face ID.

  • Why am I unable to pair my Magic Keyboard to my iPad?

    If you set up the keyboard with another device, you will first have to unpair the Magic Keyboard to pair it with your iPad. If the issue is connectivity, other fixes for iPad Bluetooth issues including ensuring Bluetooth is on and restarting both devices. Also, check that your iPad is current with the latest software from Settings > General > Software Update.

  • How do I connect a Magic Keyboard to a Mac?

    To connect a Magic Keyboard to a Mac, start by plugging in the keyboard to your MacBook Pro, Mac Mini, or MacBook Air with the provided USB to Lightning cable and toggling the keyboard on. Then enable Bluetooth on your Mac from the Bluetooth icon in the menu bar or System Preferences > Bluetooth. When the two devices pair, you will see the Magic Keyboard in the Bluetooth preferences window.

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