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Tuesday, 18 August 2015 15:20

Message to Apple: how about a MacPad! Featured

MacBook Air MacBook Air

While everybody is ruminating over the death of the laptop and prognosticating that the Mac successor should be an oversized iPad, is it possible that they’re all missing the obvious?

The answer to delivering the ideal next generation device is staring Apple in the face and it already has everything it needs to make it.

After the tepid response to the Apple Watch and the diminishing appeal of the iPad, one would have to wonder whether the products brain trust at Cupertino is disappearing into la-la land.  Are they really seriously considering an iPad Gigantis as a MacBook replacement?

No one is denying that a touch-screen tablet device like the iPad has its charms but it is definitely not a replacement for a MacBook.

I use a MacBook Air and it has everything I want in a portable computing device except for two things – no touchscreen and no tiny tablet footprint that enables me to read it in bed like a book.

And yet, for the geniuses over at Apple, how hard could it be for them to give the MacBook Air screen full 360 degrees rotation, add touchscreen functionality and give users the best of both worlds?

Ridiculous you say? Well my MacBook Air with 8GB RAM and 512GB solid-state storage is several times more powerful than the most expensive iPad.

Why is it such a leap of imagination for Apple to make the next generation MacBook and iPad a hybrid device – a MacPad?

Is it because a number of Windows 8 machines such as a few of the HP range made clumsy attempts and failed? As we know, Windows 8 was a disaster and the HP Envy X2 et al were underpowered ill-considered devices. But in the words of a famous movie: hell, at least they tried!

Apple has already mastered two great operating systems in Mac OS X and iOS. It has already mastered notebook and touchscreen device technologies. And it has the advantage of being able to tightly integrate its own excellent software with its equally excellent hardware.

Would it cannibalise existing iPad sales? No, probably not that much. There is a big difference in the price of a MacBook and an iPad.

Would it increase MacBook sales? Absolutely! Imagine being able to have a MacBook and an iPad in one device. Sort of like having an iPod in an iPhone maybe?

In fact, Apple may soon have no choice in the matter because such devices are bound to pop up in increasing numbers in the Windows world. Android is a pretty good smartphone OS but as a Galaxy Note 10.2 owner I can tell you it stinks as a tablet OS.

So, while everyone is pondering the plethora of extra features they want to see on a giant iPad Pro, there is only one extra feature I want on my next MacBook – an iPad.


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Stan Beer


Stan Beer co-founded iTWire in 2005. With 30 plus years of experience working in IT and Australian technology media, Beer has published articles in most of the IT publications that have mattered, including the AFR, The Australian, SMH, The Age, as well as a multitude of trade publications.



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