As published by the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office on Thursday, Apple’s application for an “Electronic accessory device” describes the company’s take on an oft-attempted, but never fully realized idea.
Specifically, the IP covers a “thin” accessory, a kind of “headless” device that contains traditional laptop hardware like a large display, physical keyboard, GPU, ports and more, but is incapable of functioning without a host. In this case, an iPhone or iPad would slot into the laptop-esque piece of kit to fill the role of CPU.
Aesthetically, Apple’s proposed hardware would be akin to a MacBook, with aluminum mentioned as an ideal enclosure material… More at Apple Insider.
It would be easy to say that we have seen this all before and that products like this have been overtaken by phones and tablets. Unless there is a way to add lots of pro power to a phone in a device like this and to maybe charge it etc, I fear that its future could be limited.