The Rumor Mill

Flat iMac Design

- 2001.07.09

I was thinking over the weekend - what could Apple do for an encore now that they've killed the Cube? Well, how about a square iMac? Yes, what about a flat, square iMac?

Looks like I wasn't alone. Surfing the Web over the weekend, I found a link to a possible iMac rendering by Derrick Square flat iMacTittsworth. It's thin. It uses a flat panel display, as almost everyone expects. And it's square.

Could Apple do it. Sure. The technology already exists to build this hybrid of desktop and laptop parts into a "Think Square" iMac. Some guesses:

  • Unlike a laptop, no battery. Also would use a 3.5" hard drive instead of the more expensive 2.5" drives found in the iBook and PowerBook.
  • Latest version of G3 running at 500, 600, and 700 MHz. Give it 128 MB RAM standard (1 GB max) and a 20 GB hard drive.
  • Screen would be either a 14" 1024 x 768 like recent PowerBooks or 1152 x 768 like the TiBook. Let's call it 14" wide by 14" tall.

Yes, it does have stereo speakers in the front, a slot-loading CD/DVD drive on the side, and vents at the top.

To provide room and internal ventilation, I'm guessing the SquareMac would be at least 1.5" to provide room for a standard hard drive. If it uses an external power supply, as the portables do and the Cube did, it should cool by convection, just like the iMac and Cube.

Other views show a foot in the back that keeps the flat iMac from tipping over. It's a very well thought out design.

Of course, as with the Cube, having any cables running to the computer detracts from the clean lines, so if Apple does go in this direction, maybe they'll also have a wireless keyboard and mouse to complement it.

Whatever, Derrick has come up with a clever, attractive design that everyone would recognize instantly as a Mac and as an iMac. I wonder how Apple's design will compare.

Could they sell it for $999? I doubt it at present, but I think it could sell for less than the iBook. How does $1,199 sound?

And I'm thinking maybe Spongebob Squarepants as Apple's new spokesperson. ;-)

- Anne Onymus

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