When will laptops catch-up with smartphones?

Discussion in 'Apple, Inc and Tech Industry' started by Mildredop, Oct 5, 2014.

  1. Mildredop macrumors 68020

    Oct 14, 2013
    There's a lot of hardware and useful features on smartphones that are yet to make it to Macs - and I wonder if they'll ever get them and if you all think they'd be useful.

    A few I can think of:

    - AMOLED screen
    - Touchscreen
    - SIM slot
    - Siri/Google Now
    - GPS
    - NFC
    - Notifications in the toolbar

    etc etc

    My MacBook Air is more than three years old whereas I get a new phone every year or so. I just don't see the need to update my Air as the newer ones offer nothing significantly new or different.
  2. The Doctor11 macrumors 603

    The Doctor11

    Dec 15, 2013
    New York
    You do realize laptops are not cell phones and will not be used like cell phones right?

    As for the SIM slot in Yosemite and iOS 8 you can make phone calls and send SMS messages from your Mac. It basically takes the text or phone call pushes it to your phone which can then connect to the cell phone towers. Pretty cool.
  3. Policar macrumors 6502a

    Nov 21, 2004
    A lot of features on laptops missing on phones: up to 15'' screen, physical keyboard, desktop apps, multiple USB and thunderbolt ports, trackpads, form factor designed for placing on a desk, etc.

    Touchscreens are ergonomically poor for laptops unless you convert one to a tablet. No one likes extending hands out for long periods of time, it's fatiguing.

    GPS is less useful for a computer that you don't use while moving.

    Siri is not practical in the office or at home, and is less efficient than a keyboard.

    It's a matter of user experience, not features.

    LTE on the laptop tied to a phone's data account... that could be cool.


    Following up on this, the mere fact that it's less fatiguing to hold the front of your hand toward your face than the rear of your hand will be a major advantage for phones over smart watches.

    It's more natural to turn your wrist palm down for a brief glance (traditional watcH) and more natural to turn it palm up for a longer duration. My first cell phone replaced my watch...

    An innovative smart watch would place the screen on the opposite side of the wrist.

    The fact that you lay your hands palm down on a table negates this, but if you have a table you can use a computer. The iWatch will be a huge distraction at meetings, though!
  4. Mildredop thread starter macrumors 68020

    Oct 14, 2013
    Clearly, I know a laptop is not a cell phone, but I didn't realise I'd need to clarify that.

    The feature you mention is cool, but I don't have an iPhone. The SIM slot idea was more for mobile data. Seems quite an anomoly to me that my phone can connect to the net almost anywhere, but my laptop can only do it at home or where there's wifi I'm able to use.
  5. HereBeMonsters macrumors 6502


    Jul 5, 2012
    Fareham, UK
    That's what tethering was invented for.
  6. Mildredop thread starter macrumors 68020

    Oct 14, 2013
    Tethering was invented due to the shortcomings of the laptop? Shame.

    Why should I need a smartphone to use my laptop?
  7. HereBeMonsters macrumors 6502


    Jul 5, 2012
    Fareham, UK
    I actually had an HP laptop that had some of these things about 5-6 years ago. There was a 3G sim card in for wireless data, GPS tracker to log where I was (and find the laptop if it got lost) as well as the usual bits we all take for granted now.

    The 3G part I very rarely used. The software was unreliable, and it slowed down significantly when using the work VPN. When it did connect, the cost of data was ridiculous, especially if I was abroad with it.

    I think, basically, most people, especially people who would need to be connected a lot will already have some sort of smartphone which can create its own wireless hotspot.

    You don't need a smartphone to tether though - I was doing it with a Siemens S25 back in 1999. CSD 9.6kbps connection over a 9pin serial cable to my Panasonic Toughbook CF-25.
  8. Jesla macrumors 6502a


    Jan 7, 2013
    Tennessee USA
    No touch screen for my laptops, I hate finger prints on my screens.
  9. Jessica Lares macrumors G3

    Jessica Lares

    Oct 31, 2009
    Near Dallas, Texas, USA
    Computers are used for work purposes. AMOLED is very vibrant and nice to look at, but that doesn't do any good for someone working on graphics or photography.

    Yosemite has always on and customizable dictation. It doesn't work like Siri, but you can make it do the same things with Applescript and Speech.

    I have a Tablet PC - I don't like it. I prefer my Intuos. Yes, your hands get easily strained because you have to move them all over the place. That is why they tell you to buy a graphics tablet based on your screen size.
  10. Carlanga macrumors 604


    Nov 5, 2009

    - AMOLED screen that would make them 2 expensive, just get a retina mb pro
    - Touchscreen prob this year or the next we will see this
    - SIM slot not necessary when you can just use the features in yosemite and sim removing is cumbersome
    - Siri/Google Now not needed, the computer does have talk to text
    - GPS not needed, wifi location is enough, you arne't going to be walking around w your laptop and looking at moving w gps to follow
    - NFC why? you are going to scan your comptuer next to the payment machine and then open the computer to finalize the payment
    - Notifications in the toolbar osx already has notifications that work great, you can add growl to finish it all


    then just don't touch the screen :confused: :p


    any smartphone today can do hotspot, you will eat all your data of a sim card in one sitting so not cost effective at all to have a sim card in the comptuer. Just look at the orig chromebooks that came w free wifi 250mb? I don't know anyone that upgraded or is using it. Same w the vitas w 3G
  11. AustinIllini macrumors G3


    Oct 20, 2011
    Austin, TX
    Why should we pay extra to add more things that will break on our laptops when we have perfectly good smart phones with Wi-Fi hot spots?
  12. satcomer macrumors 603


    Feb 19, 2008
    The Finger Lakes Region
    To me I see Apple after 10.10 using the iPhone touch sensor to use through OS X web sites and stores (extension of Apple Pay). To me that would be cool and once web sites get up to speed the elimation of most web site passwords. ;)
  13. roadbloc macrumors G3


    Aug 24, 2009
    I personally don't need any of these things in a laptop. I just need a screen, a keyboard and Office. Not that I think most people are like me, I just think things like NFC and a sim card slot won't be called for much.
  14. Tech198 macrumors G5

    Mar 21, 2011
    Australia, Perth
    so, the ideal laptop, would look, and act like a smart phone ?

    We're pretty much already there now, and some u can't even turn off like Notification Center on the Mac.

    There are places that pertain to mobile only, and i reckon somewhere down the line with the "...bring iOS features "Back to the Mac", Apple has somehow lost it's way..

    Alternative, use and older OS that can't update the latest iPhone... *shrugs*

    If Apple has anything to do with it, we will no doubt see TouchID on Mac's... as well.... it must come... no other company would even go down this path, and Apple is the only company that made a circular Mac Pro.

    Its probably the last few pieces of the puzzle Apple hasn't don't yet to complete the "Back to the Mac" experience...

    This is where Microsoft shines with every color because they don't do this with Windows 7.... But Apple still does.
  15. yg17 macrumors G5


    Aug 1, 2004
    St. Louis, MO
    My work laptop has a cellular radio. In fact, I think a lot of Windows laptops are available with mobile connectivity. Perhaps it's Apple that's lagging behind on that.
  16. the8thark macrumors 68040


    Apr 18, 2011
    Both are fundamentally different devices with tech appropriate to each device.
  17. Mildredop thread starter macrumors 68020

    Oct 14, 2013
    Why are tablets available with SIM slots then?
  18. AustinIllini macrumors G3


    Oct 20, 2011
    Austin, TX
    I honestly can't say. It's not worth it, IMHO.

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