Thursday, January 3, 2008

Apple Innovation Strikes Again! Is The Mac Duo To Be Reborn?

Wow and I mean wow! Yes, it looks like Apple will basically revive, according to recently revealed patents, the old Mac Duo concept! What is that? Simple: Apple will give you an extremely light portable that simply slides into an iMac monitor, thus giving you both, at the same time, a portable and desktop system - all in one system! The older Duo system is shown above and a concept drawing of the newer one below.

It was only a few days ago that I met a man who needed a laptop because of his job, but really loved the iMac and was planning to switch from Windows. However, he was torn between the the MacBook Pro that he needed and that of the iMac that he wanted. I wisely told him to wait until after Steve Jobs delivered his next Macworld keynote and I think he will be very pleased, if the reports are true, because he can now have the best of both worlds. In other words - he can eat his cake and have it too!

I always loved the Duo system and its just what this author needs and was hoping for. The Duo's were well ahead of their time and I think that in bringing back that basic concept, once again, that Apple will have yet another huge home run on their hands.

Unlike the old Duo based system, where you pop the laptop into a large base with a monitor on top, the new system, as seen in the drawing above, will simply insert into an iMac like setup - and what can I say but wow again! Wowsy, wow, wow!

When it comes to innovation, Apple continues to wow us. As Appleinsider points out, Apple is also considering an OLED based keyboard. They state: "Apple Inc. in a new patent filing proposes to solve the ages-old problem of having to manufacture distinct keyboards to support the various alphabets and key arrangements of foreign countries by developing an OLED-based model where key arrangements are altered on the fly by software."

This is fantastic! Imagine what this means? For one thing, simply by using software, a Chinese customer could have a Chinese keyboard; a German, a German keyboard and a French national could have a French keyboard, etc. Not only that, but specific software such as Adobe Photoshop, for example, could have its own dedicated keys to enhance the use of its specialized features!
 All can be added simply and conveniently through software. Wow again!

Steve Jobs promised that Apple would deliver "Killer" iMacs at this January's Macworld, on the 15h. and apparently he was kidding around. If Apple does, and my fingers are crossed on this one, and does unveil a Duo like iMac then Apple high flying stock is about to soar clean out of the atmosphere because it would, essentially give customers two computers in one.

But, of course, one must ask, at what expense to the traditional MacBooks would a Duo pose? Would such an innovative Duo system cannibalize the other laptop models? I'm not sure, but any decline in those older models would be handily offset by a huge deluge in newer iMac Duo sales!

In conclusion, the incredible momentum in raising Mac sales is about to get a lot more so. Despite the competitions best attempt to copy and steal Apple's thunder, Apple remains the most innovative company on the planet and I believe if they deliver what I and others are hoping they will, it will be, by all accounts, this will be the best year ever for Apple. Wow!

And thats my 2 cents 4 this sunny, but icy cold, Thursday, January 2008.

See Gizmodo for more mock up drawings. Cool.

Photo from Wikipedia's article on the older Duo's:

First drawing is from Appleinsider.

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