TiPb Speculates: Could Apple be Developing a Netbook with Detachable Tablet Display?

Okay, technically one was on Monday, but following up the story on Apple ordering netbook-class panels, Dow Jones (via MacRumors) is following up with the always popular anonymous sources, said to be two people close to the situation:

The mini laptop computers will likely have monitor screens that are between 9.7-inches and 10-inches, one person, who declined to be named, said.

Will this be the 12" Powerbook replacement many have been clamoring for? Will Apple really leave iTablet and large-size iPod touch demanders hanging again? Or will they combine the two products and make a netbook-sized device with a detachable multitouch-screen that works like a tablet?

It would have to move components from the keyboard section to the screen, making the top thicker and the bottom thinner (a la HTC Advantage).

Would it run iPhone OS X, however, or would people demand Mac OS X, paving the way for a really small, highly optimized version of Snow Leopard? It is building in multi-touch and CoreLocation... And could it be combined with the next generation MobileMe for online storage and cloud functionality, synced both to the full-sized Mac and even more portable iPhone...

Either way, TiPb predicts a fun, rumor-filled 2009!

Rene Ritchie

Rene Ritchie is one of the most respected Apple analysts in the business, reaching a combined audience of over 40 million readers a month. His YouTube channel, Vector, has over 90 thousand subscribers and 14 million views and his podcasts, including Debug, have been downloaded over 20 million times. He also regularly co-hosts MacBreak Weekly for the TWiT network and co-hosted CES Live! and Talk Mobile. Based in Montreal, Rene is a former director of product marketing, web developer, and graphic designer. He's authored several books and appeared on numerous television and radio segments to discuss Apple and the technology industry. When not working, he likes to cook, grapple, and spend time with his friends and family.