Will apple make true tablet w/ mba?

Discussion in 'MacBook Air' started by jvmxtra, Aug 6, 2011.

  1. jvmxtra macrumors 65816


    Sep 21, 2010
    YOu know the one w/ where you rotate the screen and make it complete tablet and rotate back to use it as laptop... with things getting thinner and thinner.. how far are we from getting those?

    I understand apple would want their separate sales w/ mba and iPad going but eventually someone else will beat apple to the market w/ those and steal away lot of potential customer.

    Definitely something to think about
  2. PaulWog Suspended

    Jun 28, 2011
    I don't think there's enough of a market for it. We're also quite a ways away from that really working. I'll explain:

    The iPad is made at a certain thickness which helps reinforce the screen. The whole body is one flat plane, so touching the screen from any angle, or holding the screen from any angle, won't do any damage to it.

    If we were to take a Macbook Air and attempt to design it to be a foldable tablet, we'd have to make the screen portion relatively thick to allow for that same kind of abuse (otherwise it may crack, warp, or break in some way). If we thicken the screen, the thickness of the overall unit is increased: Now we have a Macbook Pro in terms of thickness. So to counterbalance, you'd say we should thin out the body of the Air: Well, again, now we have a problem. Now there's not enough space for the hardware.

    I could see more support for a fold-out laptop style for the iPad, where Apple specifically designs a keyboard which attaches in some fancy and nice way to the iPad and acts as a case (such things exist, but if Apple really cared they would make the idea so streamlined and so awesome that it would just feel like a whole new thing was brought to the table).

    I think in the future ideally the iOS and OS X would come together to create a final OS that just works excellently on anything. In the future ideally hardware will need to be cooled less (requiring less or no internal copper pipes and fans and whatnot), and hardware could be smaller as well. That would allow for more room to deal with user-interface stuff (reinforcement with metal, etc).
  3. mbarriault macrumors regular

    Dec 3, 2008
    Tablets in the sense that you're talking about have been around for the better part of the decade, and they're one of the biggest flops in the entire electronics industry, just behind UMPCs (which is exactly what Microsoft is trying to revive with Windows "tablets").
  4. jvmxtra thread starter macrumors 65816


    Sep 21, 2010
    Biggest flop? Ok but that's because technology was not available.

    After they bring retina display to ipad, only possible way for tablet to go is this way I think.

    Or maybe I am compleltely wrong.
  5. PaulWog Suspended

    Jun 28, 2011
    The purpose of a tablet is different from that of a laptop. That is why there are two separate devices.

    If technology allows, often devices converge. For example, the iPhone: An MP3 player, touchscreen, phone, and other things come together into one device. You can look at any number of devices this way: Fridges with television screens attached to them. List can go on, but my thinker isn't working to well right now so I can't add on to that list :D

    There are limiting factors, though. One is the hardware: When we bring devices together, there may be drawbacks. More heat, less battery life, or a worse overall package can be the problem. For example, I have a Samsung Wave (it's pretty much an iPhone 4, same screen quality, same camera quality, 18GB of storage, etc): I don't use my MP3 playing capabilities, I don't use my movie playing capabilities, I don't use my Face-Calling capabilities, I don't use my internet capabilities, etc, etc. I just don't have time nor care for these things on my phone. They also drain the battery more quickly. My phone is a phone: it makes phone calls. So I may end up purchasing an iPod nano for bike rides and whatnot as an mp3 player.

    So you see with that example above, even though my phone can be my MP3 player, and even though I carry it around everywhere, it isn't necessarily the most convenient option for me.

    So with a laptop versus a tablet, we have to weigh the options yet again. It could be a great idea one day when the hardware is ready for it, and the user-base is demanding something like it. Or it may never be a good idea. Who knows.

    I know right now, I'd rather have an iPad and a Macbook Air separately. I use my Air for work-related things (and leisurely activities as well, like web browsing and posting here). I wouldn't need a touchscreen on my Air. The iPad would serve a different (though similar purpose). I dunno... as things stand, I prefer keeping the two devices separate. Kind of like how I prefer an MP3 player being separate from a phone, and my tv separate from my fridge... etc, etc.
  6. Mak47 macrumors 6502a

    Mar 27, 2011
    Harrisburg, PA
    I gotta say, I think you're totally wrong. Those computers that flip around have been around for years. No one wants them.

    The millions of iPads that have sold in their current configuration are a pretty good indication that people who want a tablet want a tablet. Not a flippy weird backwards laptop.
  7. chrono1081 macrumors 604


    Jan 26, 2008
    Isla Nublar
    They've actually had those for a while, but no one buys them because of the awkward touch screen layer to mouse based OS interaction. Windows laptops have had them and so have Macs (with axiom modbooks).
  8. alust2013 macrumors 601


    Feb 6, 2010
    On the fence
    To make something like that, Apple would have to go in the opposite direction that they have been with the Air and iPad. That is, they would have to make it thicker. It's not about technology, as no amount of technology can get around the thickness needed for one of those hinges to make the flip display, as metal is only so strong and durable. The touch displays also have to be thicker than the display that the air currently has, and I don't think Apple will have any part of that. That type of computer has been out for a long time and has yet to put up even acceptable numbers.
  9. Fernandez21 macrumors 601


    Jun 16, 2010
    It would be kind of cooler if you had an iPad with a keyboard dock. When you carry arou d just the top part, the iPad part, it functions just like an iPad. But then you dock it and it becomes a laptop, os and everything. I that would work better than a flip out screen.
  10. jouster macrumors 65816

    Jan 21, 2002
    The iPad has pretty much shown that this form factor is a failure. So no, I doubt Apple has much interest in it.
  11. urkel macrumors 68030

    Nov 3, 2008
    People only say Apple wont do it because Jobs said he wont do it yet. But his job isnt to tell the public about the future, his job is to sell products RIGHT NOW.

    For anyone to assume that laptops and tablets wont reach convergence is silly. Especially considering that with Lion then we're practically there so my bet is that OS 11 will have iOS and OS X being the same product but spread on different hardware for various class of consumers.
  12. jvmxtra thread starter macrumors 65816


    Sep 21, 2010
    Nice point ...

    I also understand others are saying about screen n how it has to become thicker to make it work n how unlikely it is for apple to do it.
  13. meistervu macrumors 65816

    Jul 24, 2008
    I think it's just a matter of time

    I would buy one.

    Imagine something the size between 11" and 13" with a keyboard that can fold flat behind the screen to make a tablet, and the keyboard is turned off when folded like that. You gain:

    1. function of a laptop
    2. function of a tablet (portrait mode with a 13" is quite impressive)
    3. a cover for your tablet

    Sure, there are some technical issues to overcome, but it seems to me that we are almost there. Take the worst case scenario with the current technology, if you take an iPad screen and add keyboard to it, then increase the thickness a few millimeters to accommodate the keyboard and additional space require to go from an IPAD logic board to a MBA logic board, plus a battery that last 8 hours. I would guess that Apple can make one such device next year with the thickness and weight of a 13" MBP. If a lot of people had no problem with the weight and size of a 13" MBP, why would they with this new device?

    Sure it would be nicer thinner and lighter especially as a tablet, and it would not appeal to those who just wanted a tablet or a laptop, but I think that there would be enough people interested in it to make it a viable product.

    Would you pay $2000 for such a device? Some would, but I doubt that they would make any where near the profit of the $500 iPad at this point. But in the near future I would expect it to be a natural product category.
  14. Duke15 macrumors 6502


    May 18, 2011
    No i think those cases with the Bluetooth keyboards pretty much get rid of the need for apple to do that, they'll just eventually make the iPad as powerful as the MacBooks, but thats a long way down the road i think.
  15. jvmxtra thread starter macrumors 65816


    Sep 21, 2010
    I think at some point(maybe couple years down the road), mba will be dual laptop/tablet and keep same price point.

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