We had already talked about it on our pages, but after the keynote it was natural that the greatest attention would be paid to the products presented during the Steve Jobs exhibition. In particular, the general recall has been catalyzed by the iPhone and will certainly be so for many days.
In the meantime, we must not forget the release of the ModBook, the Mac tablet. The ModBook intended for creative users, such as artists or designers, but also professionals, graphic designers, professional designers and developers. Without forgetting the normal users who waited for an Apple branded tablet. Certainly a product designed to enhance the renowned qualities and graphic capabilities of Macs.
As we previously mentioned, the tablet is not a new official Apple product; it is specifically a MacBook modified "ad hoc" by the Axiotron company and distributed through the partner OWC. The changes are substantial, but keep the basic system of which the MacBook is supplied unchanged: we will therefore find Intel Core 2 Duo processors, iSight integrated , the expected software and especially Mac OS X, with its award-winning Inkwell handwriting recognition system. The most noticeable variations concern the screen, always from 13.3 "but sensitive to the touch of the additional pen and the GPS option. All in a new chrome / satin magnesium chassis.
What's new: stylus and GPS
The main novelties lie in the Wacom Penabled hardware, the heart of the "pen-touch screen" technology of the ModBook. In fact, the nib uses a radio frequency system to communicate inputs to the screen; which also allows you to write with your hands resting on the screen without fear of unwanted inputs. The cursor can be controlled with the stylus even without the latter being fully supported on the screen, making the interface more practical and light. All features covered by a Wacom patent, which, in the figure of its president Joe Deal, says he is excited to have integrated his technology with Apple hardware.
Another strong point of the ModBook is the opportunity to have built-in GPS technology, developed on SiRFstar III chipsets, in collaboration with GlobalSat Technologies Corporation. The integration of GPS inside the tablet appears as a strategic move also to try to promote the inclusion of this type of technology in products other than the most discounted car satellite navigators.
"Made in Apple" multimedia
The Apple equipment also guarantees excellent multimedia opportunities: the presence of iSight allows video conferencing via iChat or other software, ensuring the quality of the lenses from the Apple webcam. On the audio / video side, the basic version of the ModBook has a CD / DVD Combo Drive, expandable in Super Drive; features that combined with the 13.3 ?display make the tablet also an excellent portable DVD player.
Configurations and distribution
The basic version of the ModBook offers a 1.83 GHz Intel Core 2 Duo processor, with hardware corresponding to the configuration of the basic MacBook, covered for one year by the OWC warranty. Advanced configurations offer the addition of GPS technology, 2GHz processor, warranty extension up to three years, memory extension up to 2GB of RAM and 160 or 200GB hard drives.
The basic version will be sold at a suggested retail price of $ 2279. In this regard, Axiotron itself has decided to launch a promotion that, starting from the Macworld start date, will last until January 31 and provides for the offer of the various versions at a reduced price.
It is already possible to order the tablet on the American market, thanks precisely to the exclusive partnership between Axiotron and Other World Computing (OWC). It will be possible to choose the optimal configuration among the three models available on the online store.
The ModBook will also be available in Europe in the second half of 2007.
Macitynet attended the presentation of the ModBook. A complete gallery at this address