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Apple planning iPhones and iPads that can dock inside MacBooks

Apple planning iPhones and iPads that can dock inside MacBooks

A brand new patent covers how iPhones or iPads may very well be docked inside bigger gadgets much like a MacEbook Pro to be able to present further performance when wanted.

Detail from patent covering the docking of devices such as an iPhone to a casing similar to a MacBook Pro

Detail from patent protecting the docking of gadgets similar to an iPhone to a casing much like a MacEbook Pro

A future iOS gadget could possibly bodily develop into half of a bigger pc similar to a MacEbook Pro to be able to present further options and capabilities. It’s much like the idea of the PowerBook Duo which might slot right into a unit to create a desktop Mac.

“The appearance of a portable computing device, including its design and its heft, is important to a user, as the outward appearance contributes to the overall impression that the user has of the portable computing device,” writes Apple in “Electronic Accessory Device”, US Patent No 10,545,542. “However, due to restrictive amount of available space, the portable computing device can require additional resources to provide extended functionality.”

One drawing included with the patent present a seemingly MacEbook Pro-like gadget the place the trackpad has been changed with a slot for an iPhone to enter. Another reveals the identical bigger gadget however this time with an iPad slotting in the place the show normally is.

The gadget has the shape issue of a MacEbook Pro however Apple’s patent describes it as merely being an “accessory device” to the iPhone or one other small “host device.”

“[An] accessory device can have limited or no data processing resources,” it says. “The accessory device can have a form factor corresponding to a laptop computer and as such can include data output resources such as a visual display and input resources such as a keyboard.”

“The accessory device can also include memory resources,” it continues. “The accessory device can include a port having a connection mechanism arranged to facilitate a communication channel between the accessory device and a host device. In this way, the host device utilizes resources provided by the accessory device.”

One such connection mechanism can be a dock the place the host gadget can make the most of all of the options of the accent. As with the outdated PowerBook Duo dock, Apple describes such digital accent as not being usable by itself.

Detail from the patent. It looks at first like a regular laptop, but that's an iPad docked where the screen usually is.

Detail from the patent. It seems to be at first like an everyday laptop computer, however that’s an iPad docked the place the display normally is.

“[The] electronic accessory device can be considered a ‘thin’ device, in that it extends the functionality of another device but is inoperable by itself as a stand-alone device. As such, the accessory device can have little or no independent processing resources in the form of a CPU or similar comprehensive processor,” says Apple.

“The accessory device, however, can provide auxiliary processing resources, such a graphical processing unit, or GPU, or other processing resources that can support the functions of the portable computing device,” it continues.

While many of the descriptions and all the drawings present iPhones and iPads, Apple sees this docking facility as one thing many gadgets can used.

“[It] is anticipated that the accessory device is not a stand-alone computing device but only acts in concert with a host device. The host device can be a portable computing device, such as, for example, a smart phone, media player, tablet computer, or other portable computing device,” it concludes.

The sole credited inventor on the patent, Brett W. Degner, has greater than 100 different patents, most lately together with one to do with Apple’s potential curved-glass iMac redesign.

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