What you need to know
- Someone put an iPad mini into a Macintosh Plus case.
- You can use the iPad mini as normal and it's fully powered.
- But Steve Jobs probably wouldn't be too keen on it.
People really seem to want a touchscreen Mac, and while Apple doesn't seem to want to offer it, someone else did. But they did it by putting an iPad mini into the case of a classic Mac – the Macintosh Plus from 1986.
While Steve Jobs likely wouldn't like what Travis DeRose has created here, I have to say that all I now want in life is one of these sat on my desk. Thankfully Travis has shown us how to do it in blog post and video form.
What it all boils down to is finding a way to mount an iPad mini into the Macintosh Plus case. Travis says that it should work in all Macs that use the same chassis, so if you happen to have a Macintosh SE knocking around, you're good to go.
From there it's a case of powering the iPad by butchering a Lightning cable and then using a fancy button to cut and re-enable the power as a way to bring the unlock screen up – you can't access the Home or Sleep/Wake button once the iPad mini has been mounted.
This is a cool project that you can do yourself, so long as you have the kit and the skill to pull it off. I have neither, but hopefully, some of you can replicate the great work Travis has done here. Shout out in the comments if you do!
Oliver Haslam has written about Apple and the wider technology business for more than a decade with bylines on How-To Geek, PC Mag, iDownloadBlog, and many more. He has also been published in print for Macworld, including cover stories. At iMore, Oliver is involved in daily news coverage and, not being short of opinions, has been known to 'explain' those thoughts in more detail, too.
Having grown up using PCs and spending far too much money on graphics card and flashy RAM, Oliver switched to the Mac with a G5 iMac and hasn't looked back. Since then he's seen the growth of the smartphone world, backed by iPhone, and new product categories come and go. Current expertise includes iOS, macOS, streaming services, and pretty much anything that has a battery or plugs into a wall. Oliver also covers mobile gaming for iMore, with Apple Arcade a particular focus. He's been gaming since the Atari 2600 days and still struggles to comprehend the fact he can play console quality titles on his pocket computer.
Looks like someone needs to go back to work. He clearly has way too much time on his hands. "People really seem to want a touchscreen Mac" Not really. It would be about as useful as the touchscreen on Windows 10. Which is, not very much. No Windows apps are built for touchscreen, and neither are Mac apps. Neither OS is built for touch either, although Windows 10 pretends it is. The experience sucks, however. You can put a steering wheel on a motorcycle, but that does not make it a car. Nor does it mean it will work well.
Have you never tried to press a button on the screen of your Mac? Never reached out to touch it to scroll? I sure have, and so have a lot of other people. Sometimes touch would be nice. A Mac with touch enabled wouldn't be able to make use of it for every interaction. Too many places, the touch targets are too small. But yet, as you say Windows 10 hasn't done a great job of deep integration with touch, and they can produce something like a Surface Studio which, if one were honest, would be a hit among creatives if Apple had made it. I think limited integration would be successful. It's not like we could just whip out our iPads and enjoy touch-nirvana. The screens top out at 12.9", and there's no pro 3D apps like Maya, modo, Houdini, or ZBrush.
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