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Apple exploring most radical iMac redesign since the original

Apple is pondering a dramatic reimagining of its iMac desktop computer, which would be largely formed from just one sheet of curved glass.

In a newly-published patent application, Apple describes an “Electronic Device with Glass Housing Member” that could represent a sea change in the way Apple presents its popular all-in-one.

The patent and associated diagrams describe a glass housing, which would house the embedded display, as well as embedded input devices like the keyboard and trackpads.

Related: iMac 2019 review

Within the application (via Apple Insider) the company writes: “The electronic device may include a display coupled to the glass housing member and configured to provide a visual output at the display area. The electronic device may include an input device coupled to the glass housing member and configured to detect inputs at the input area. The electronic device may include a support structure coupled to the glass housing member and configured to support the computing device.”

Picture of a labelled diagram of iMac patent

The images also show how the design would be aided by a wedge around the back of the display, designed to ensure it remains balanced on the desk, while also housing the components necessary to power the computer. The patent also explains how adjusting this wedge would also alter the angle of the display itself.

It’s clear Apple has fully thought this concept through, because diagrams also show how the curved design could be folded further inwards for easier transportation. In this instance, the wedge, effectively a Mac mini, would be detached from the main housing.

Picture of a labelled diagram of iMac patent

Of course, this doesn’t remotely guarantee that Apple is planning to make this radical redesign a reality in the near future, but it is very interesting to see the company looking in this direction.

The iMac remains arguably the most iconic Mac computer the company makes, given the history behind it, and its importance to the company following its unveiling way back in 1998.

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