Published by the U.S. Patent Office, a document registered by Apple testifies to research done on a computer with a very thin screen and very curved lines.
The revolution, Apple knows. Today it is the world of the computer that Cupertino could well shake up in the more or less long term. American company engineers have filed a patent showing an all-in-one computer with a very thin screen, supported by an all-glass structure in one piece, slightly curved towards the user. It would rest on the desk and this project could be the common point of several different concepts.
A great docking station for MacBook?
Another idea that Apple has come up with is to use this screen as a great docking station for a MacBook. A hole at the base of the structure would allow the laptop keyboard to slide out and the display could be moved out of the way. In this configuration, the laptop screen could be used to support the structure.
Cupertino may even have thought of this project as polymorphic. The basis of everything would be the screen in its glass case and the rest of the elements, 100% removable and to be combined or associated as desired.
This type of patent shows that Cupertino’s firm is not only focusing on smartphones and laptops and that engineers are still imagining what our fixed computers of tomorrow could be.
As is often the case with patents, it’s doubtful that Apple will offer such a product in the near future, but behind these very fine designs, we can also see the arrival – expected, hoped for or at least announced by recurring rumors – of Macs powered by homemade chips.
For many observers of the Mac world, or for some of its best-known players, Apple has been preparing for some time now for the transition of (at least) some of its Macs to SoCs, similar to those found in the iPad and iPhone. This project would even have a code name: Kalamata. Catalyst, an effort to port iOS software to macOS, would be another central element in the preparation for this great migration.
From then on, the ultra-thin designs described by this patent could be made possible thanks to chips that heat up and consume less.
The one-piece PC of the future?
First concept, a computer as we know it. The configuration would take place in an element, placed at the back, which would serve to maintain the glass structure.
And since Apple even talks about being able to vary the inclination of the assembly to adjust the viewing angle, one can imagine that the support structure would offer a discreet but effective adjustment device.
On the front of the device, resting on a tray, there would be a classic keyboard. According to the various diagrams proposed in the technical document, this keyboard is sometimes integral, incorporated into an element of the structure, and sometimes removable.
The keyboard would be surrounded by what seems to be tactile interfaces, either TouchBar or Magic TrackPad style, which could be ideal for right-handed people, left-handed people and those who can no longer do without Apple’s Magic Shortcut Bar.
Nothing is certain, of course, but it’s hard not to be enthusiastic when it comes to potential innovation.