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Apple Investigating Thinner Notebook Enclosures

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Apr 12, 2001
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A December 2006 patent application from Apple indicates they are working on thinner / stronger enclosures for their laptops.

Apple describes two conflicting design goals for producing thinner and lighter laptops: "the desirability of making the enclosure lighter and thinner, and the desirability of making the enclosure stronger and more rigid."

Instead, Apple describes an improved enclosure where the parts are "structurally bonded together" to form a singular composite structure. In the application, Apple acknowledges that while "current enclosure designs work well, in many instances it would be desirable to provide enclosures that are thinner, lighter, stronger and aesthetically more pleasing than current enclosure designs."

These goals for thinner and lighter laptop designs reinforces rumors of ultraportable and thin Apple laptops.


 

Zwhaler

macrumors 604
Jun 10, 2006
6,903
1,254
This is very cool, I would like to see Apple release a ultraportable.
 
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Superdrive

macrumors 6502a
Oct 21, 2003
762
26
Dallas, Tx
Sounds good to me. My 12" PowerBook dented if I looked at it wrong. I want something small, strong, and light. I'm just not sure if the 13.3" MacBook fits the bill yet.
 
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warfa

macrumors regular
Apr 12, 2007
184
0
SD
Anything that will make my future apple notebooks even better are welcomed!!:cool:
 
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Chaszmyr

macrumors 601
Aug 9, 2002
4,267
85
Sounds like repairs may be impossible on any device manufactured with this sort of technique.
 
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Cabbit

macrumors 68020
Jan 30, 2006
2,128
1
Scotland
isnt there a limit due to the size of usb, firewire, headphone jacks and display sizes, also the keyboard. If you make the 15 inch macbook pro say half a inch thick were do all the ports go?
 
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kalisphoenix

macrumors 65816
Jul 26, 2005
1,231
1
A December 2006 patent application from Apple indicates they are working on thinner / stronger enclosures for their laptops.

I think I'm going to need a stiff drink. This is by far the most interesting Mac rumor this year.
 
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Abstract

macrumors Penryn
Dec 27, 2002
24,517
261
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I think they're thin enough.

I agree. Being too thick is not the problem. I think 1" is good enough, while anything thinner, say 0.8", isn't a big deal whatsoever other than as an excuse for Apple to ask for a premium $$$ for the bragging rights of owning a thinner laptop. And besides, laptops won't get thinner until HDD and the DVD/disk drive gets thinner, or disappears entirely.

But anyway, they said that making a laptop smaller and making a laptop stronger are conflicting interests. Instead of making a thinner, say 0.8" laptop, with the aim of not making it weaker than they are today, why don't they just concentrate on making it stronger, but keeping it the same 1" thickness? That way, there's no conflict between size and strength. :confused:

I think I'm going to need a stiff drink. This is by far the most interesting Mac rumor this year.

"And in other news, so is every other computer company."
 
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Dustman

macrumors 65816
Apr 17, 2007
1,318
125
Sounds like repairs may be impossible on any device manufactured with this sort of technique.

they'd probably do it like the current nano. the illusion of one piece of material, but actually composed of multiple "sides". maybe slide out the motherboard for upgrades like the nano?
 
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Eidorian

macrumors Penryn
Mar 23, 2005
29,094
299
Indianapolis
I agree. Being too thick is not the problem. I think 1" is good enough, while anything thinner, say 0.8", isn't a big deal whatsoever other than as an excuse for Apple to ask for a premium $$$ for the bragging rights of owning a thinner laptop. And besides, laptops won't get thinner until HDD and the DVD/disk drive gets thinner, or disappears entirely.

But anyway, they said that making a laptop smaller and making a laptop stronger are conflicting interests. Instead of making a thinner, say 0.8" laptop, with the aim of not making it weaker than they are today, why don't they just concentrate on making it stronger, but keeping it the same 1" thickness? That way, there's no conflict between size and strength. :confused:
Materials > Size

I think 1" is the perfect thickness for a laptop as it is.
 
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GodBless

macrumors 65816
Jan 22, 2005
1,004
0
Here is a link to a place where you can find images to the patent--they are in a quite large images and are in an awkward frame (at least for me in Safari) however.
 
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Leoff

macrumors regular
Jun 8, 2004
140
0
OK, now maybe this is just me, but... how thin is too thin?

I love Apple's style. I love the fact that they have made great strides in both function AND form in their entire line of computers, particularly laptops. The MacBook and MacBook Pro are wonders for how much innovation they cram into the smallest designs.

I'm all for smaller laptops. I would love the idea of a sub-notebook or such from Apple, with a 10" screen or thereabouts.

But as for thickness, why? Seriously, while I want the footprint of a laptop to be small, I also do want it to have a LITTLE... what's the word... girth to it. Even if I know it won't break, I like the feeling of something with substance under my fingers, something that won't feel like I'm gonna bend the sucker in two when I type.

Other dimensions, sure... smaller the better. true portable-ness. But thickness, or rather thinness... that's always bugged me.
 
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asxtb

macrumors 6502
Sep 1, 2005
322
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Wirelessly posted (Vodafone/1.0/V705SH/SHJ001 Browser/VF-NetFront/3.3 Profile/MIDP-2.0 Configuration/CLDC-1.1)

I want one! I'd definately be one of the first in line to get an ultraportable.

All these rumors keep pointing to the samething. Just a matter of when...
 
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Mydel

macrumors 6502a
Apr 8, 2006
744
457
Sometimes here mostly there
Thikness is not a problem but more "rigid" frame for a screen would be welcome. My previous PB G4 screen was always goung U shape after lid was closed. And even when was open screen bazel was way to soft
 
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