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Apple plans to release an iPhone-powered laptop.
In September 2016, Apple filed a patent, or an exclusive right to sell an original product, for an “electronic accessory device.” Although the device resembles a laptop, it has a slot near the trackpad where the iPhone is supposed to be placed. The device also contains the usual parts of a laptop such as the screen, keyboard, graphics processing unit (GPU), and ports. However, the iPhone will function as both the trackpad and the battery. Moreover, the device will not be able to operate without an iPhone.
Once an iPhone is placed in the slot, the device can enhance the iPhone’s functions, such as provide greater memory and better graphics. In addition, the iPhone will have a larger screen since it will use the laptop’s screen.
Through this innovation, Apple is following a trend among technology developers to bridge the gap between mobile devices and laptops. Microsoft’s Surface Pro 4 and Dell’s XPS 13 are both laptops with touchscreen displays, which allow the devices to function as tablets. On the other hand, Hewlett Packard’s Elite X3, and Motorola’s Atrix smartphone both connect to laptop-like accessories.
Samsung took a different direction from competitor Apple in developing its new device. While Apple’s device is leaning toward laptops, Samsung plans to combine either the Galaxy S8 or the Galaxy S8+ smartphones with the new DeX Station to produce a desktop computer, which is similar to Microsoft’s Continuum for Windows Mobile. Once integrated, the hybrid device will operate as an Android desktop computer.