back to article Tablet MacBook launched... again

Tablet computing fans fed up with waiting for Apple to release a pen-powered Mac are at long last able to buy one thanks to US-based Mac upgrade specialist Other World Computing. OWC Axiotron Modbook OWC's Axiotron Modbook: a tablet Mac at last Slip OWC $1300 (£795/€1015) and send in your brand new metal MacBook, and the …

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  1. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    AppleCares not for this, I suspect...

    E-peen-enhancing though a tablet Mac might be for the high end Apple aficionado, I can't imagine it'll be any way compatible with AppleCare, which would make it a very expensive gamble on how long a Modbook will last before developing hardware issues.

    It is kind of surprising that Apple haven't released an official version, though - god knows there are enough people out there who'd buy it.

  2. Michael
    Stop

    You'd think it would be a no-brainer

    What's that? We've got a strong foothold in the mid-to-high end laptop market, and are popular with people who like gadgets? We've released a range of portable media players and phones with a well regarded and intuitive multi-touch interface? Our deals with mobile network providers could get us an easy entrance into the highly mobile computing market?

    Well, I just don't see how those things could ever work together.

  3. Webster Phreaky
    Jobs Horns

    And Again ... it will be a flop

    What do you get when you make an already over priced buggy POS MacBook into a REALLY over-priced POS Tablet MacBook that no one really wants?

    A Flop.

  4. Matt Thornton
    Thumb Down

    Who does the maths over there?

    I can't think of anything more pointless than this tablet kajigga, but £1345 for one direct from them, or £1400 you paid for your laptop + £800 to convert it? Who would do that?

  5. Proton Wrangler
    Thumb Up

    A pretty slick conversion

    A friend has had one of these since August. It keeps the bottom shell of the MacBook intact, with the motherboard and peripherals. The top shell/keyboard and display are lopped off and replaced with a digitizer and display similar to the Wacom Cintiq digitizer/LCDs.

    I believe they get some kind of accomodation from Apple to buy the base shells sans display which probably lets them offer the new units so inexpensively (relative to the conversion)

    Axiotron does not have much software of their own on the beast, relying on Apple's Ink system and Wacom's tablet driver software. My friend does illustration work on hers, and I expect that's what most of them are used for, rather than a specialized vertical application

  6. Andrew Kirkpatrick

    I smell Psystar

    ... hmm, I love the smell of legal action early in the morning

  7. Jim
    Thumb Down

    @ I smell Psystar

    Why? Psystar are selling non-macs with OS X pre-installed, these guys are selling (mostly) mac hardware.

    And, if Proton Wrangler is to believed, they are doing this with the knowledge of Apple.

  8. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    old macbooks only

    While extremely expensive they actually work very well, and they include their own warranty.

    but its only available on the old style plastic macbooks not any of the aluminum ones.

  9. Anonymous Coward
    Jobs Horns

    Buy a proper tablet PC

    ...or you could buy a proper tablet PC (HP 2730p, Gigabyte M912, etc) and stick OSX on it. It works on these and other tablet PCs...

  10. James Prior

    @ AC "old macbooks only"

    So you missed the bit which said:

    "Slip OWC $1300 (£795/€1015) and send in your brand new *metal* MacBook, and the company will convert into a tablet it's calling the Axiotron Modbook."

  11. Proton Wrangler
    Dead Vulture

    plastic macbooks only, for the moment

    To be clear, a close perusal of the axiotron.com site confirms that they presently offer this only for the original macbooks, but they hope to have a revised shell casting available in "mid-2009" to serve the new ones. El Reg has had a bit of a cock-up on the press release comprehension front.

    So far as Apple is concerned, for OS X licensing this _is_ an Apple-labeled product, just resold in a modified case. Axiotron sells through distributors in the US and Canada, with each responsible for warrenty service.

    Reading their forums, I see the Axiotron CEO was an Apple engineer on the Newton and some other products, and the company is an Apple Premier Developer, though I'm not sure if that signfies more than dropping a few grand on ADC membership.

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