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Apple may launch a hybrid iPad tablet with MacOS in the future

Apple new ipad pro 2020 hero
© Apple

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Apple's decision of sticking to iPad OS for its tablets seems to be very firm. That might still change in the future as the latest Apple patent hints towards an upcoming hybrid iPad-MacBook device through the use of an external accessory. Surprisingly, there is also a mention of a 'MacOS-like' software along with the filing.


  • Apple files a new patent about a hinged keyboard accessory for tablets.
  • The latest patent points to a 'MacOS-like' UI for its iPads.
  • It's already the second patent associated with a detachable input accessory.

MacOS version for iPad may happen in the future

The latest finding of Patently Apple is about a hinged keyboard that uses magnetic ports when attaching to a tablet. As for the design, it resembles a typical MacBook keyboard with a trackpad and extended docking system based on the sketches.

Noticeably, the keyboard's flip looks to support different accessories such as detachable camera, projector, and pen. You can also position the tablet facing backward away from the keyboard. But what piques our interest is the mention of hybrid MacOS interface for the tablet when docked to the keyboard.

This could mean that Apple is not ruling out powering the iPad Air or iPad Pro with a MacBook-like operating system. Presumably, it could also mean an upgraded version of the iPad OS with integrated Mac features. We can only confirm that of course once the hybrid tablet or accessory becomes official.

iPad hybrid accessory with Macbook OS features
Apple's hybrid tablet could utilize a OS X like interface once docked in the keyboard. / © Patently Apple

This is the second Apple patent related to an input device that employs the same design to connect an iPad or iPhone. The first batch was depicted as a modular accessory that works both as a keyboard or secondary display similar to a dual-folding device. Think of a Galaxy Z Fold 3 or upcoming Pixel Fold smartphone, but you can mechanically cut the display into two and later attach them together.

The ideas behind these patents are logical with practical uses. So, we're not dismissing the possibility of Apple eventually bringing these into an actual product, especially the Mac OS version for its tablets.

Do you think Apple could soon introduce an updated iPad OS with Mac functionalities? Let us know.

Source: Patently Apple

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Jade Bryan

Jade Bryan
Junior Editor

I still remember how amazed I was when I first got hold of the Nokia 3210 back when I was a kid, and it was during that time I developed my love for technology, particularly for mobile phones. I started sharing my knowledge through writing in different blogs and forums back in Nokia Nseries era. I even make videos before where I put different phones side-by-side. Today, I'm still an avid enthusiast of smartphones, but my interests have evolved into smart devices and electric vehicles.

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