The latest case in point is the Motorola Atrix. It's actually a very powerful phone on its own, sporting Android 2.2, MOTOBLUR, a 5 MP camera, 720p video capture, and more. However, when you couple it with what Motorola is calling a revolutionary "Lapdock", it becomes a full-blown computer. Actually, it becomes more of a netbook, running Motorola's webtop app, which lets you see and interact with your phone's content. By itself the Lapdock is just dump, but when you snap in the Atrix, it comes to life with a browser, media player, and more.
As I stated previously, while Motorola is calling the Lapdock revolutionary, I had something very similar for my Windows Mobile phone back in 2008 called the REDFLY.
At the time I couldn't see the value in having a laptop that required the power of my mobile phone to work, and I feel the same way about the Motorola Atrix. While it seems cool initially, I'd rather get a bigger phone screen so that I can do everything I need to, without having to dock to a laptop.
The folks at PhoneScoop actually show off a decent amount of the interface and functionality of the Lapdock in the video below, so make sure to give that a look before you completely write off the Lapdock concept.
Now that we've rebirthed the dumb laptop, it looks like HTC has set it sights on giving the stylus a new life with its HTC Flyer tablet.
It will be interesting to see what's next to come out of hibernation and hit mainstream again in 2011.