Apple Might Be Working On iPhone-Powered iPad Hybrid MacBook?

Apple patent reveals something unusual as had a new patent application published in which it details are provided of a laptop-like device which could act as a host for an iPhone or iPad, creating a kind of hybrid touch-screen MacBook which uses the iOS hardware as a source of computing power. In other words, a way to transform an iOS device into a MacBook. According to a new patent made public on Thursday – suggests Apple is exploring the idea of thinking different while turning your iPhone into a “brain” that powers a MacBook-liked device.

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For now! Forget the iPhone 8 (or “X” or “Edition) that’s coming later this year. Published by the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office, is the patent, is another take on an idea which has already been tried multiple times by companies such as Motorola and Microsoft with limited access. This patent describes a thin laptop-like shell (referred to as an “accessory device”) without a processor. In fact, Apple’s patent shows that the firm is at least looking into the possibility of joining that semi-illustrious company and having a bash at a hybrid-kind device of its own architecture.

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As per the application, the given accessory is sort of a ‘headless’ device that features laptop-like hardware with a large display, physical keyboard. GPU and connectivity ports among others. From a technical point of drawings within the patent application, the device in question would closely resemble a MacBook computer, with the so-called “thin” device comprising hardware, but also being unable to function without an iOS device slotted into it. Instead, you’d dock a “smart phone, media player, tablet PC, or other portable computing device” into the accessory device to power it.

However, the patent comes with two different illustrations for how this would work for phones and tablets. Again, if the drawings are anything to go by then the iOS device would likely be placed where a MacBook’s trackpad would normally reside, possibly with the iPhone’s screen filling that role. For phones, there’d be a slot on the accessory device instead of a trackpad. Tablet devices, however, would dock right into the space where a laptop’s screen would normally be. It also likely that any 4G LTE and WiFi capabilities offered by the iOS device would also be eventual by the host.

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Speaking about the iPad, it is shown to embody the display of the hybrid MacBook, so a dedicated Smart case for the gadget from Apple could make sense in that regard. Though the patent is light on specific use-case applications, it’s not difficult to imagine how particular such a device would be for some users.

Logic? It’s no-brainer for Apple to create a new way to let users better access the device that has all their personal data, when indeed smartphones now the most-used and most personal computers, you could always use cloud service, but it’s not always that easy enough.

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As of now, Apple appears keen to continue its marketing strategy of pushing the iPad as a notebook computer replacement, we somewhat find unlikely that this patent application will give birth to a new product category within the company. With the fact that we already know how the Mac-maker likes to patent anything and everything it comes up with in its labs, we’re relatively confident this will not be something we will be looking up for any time soon.

(Source: USPTO)

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