iTab: An iBook-based Tablet Mac

The iTab is a slick-looking tablet Mac but it's not from Cupertino. This little pen-based Mac is from an outfit called


The iTab is a slick-looking tablet Mac but it's not from Cupertino. This little pen-based Mac is from an outfit called

It isn't the first time someone has converted an iBook into a Mac tablet, that honor goes to Joseph DeRuvo Jr. who in 2004 created the first tablet Mac by cutting into an iBook and installing an extra 40GB drive, flash card reader, three FireWire ports and a kiosk touch screen from Troll Touch. His little piece of history had 27 bids and sold on eBay for US$1525.

The iTab has an attractive pitch:

Surf the Web, read books, organize your thoughts, draw and doodle, play games, listen to music, voice chat with friends, even burn CDs to create your own video or musical masterpiece. All like your writing on a notepad. An infinitely large notepad. With built-in wireless capability and 512MB of memory standard, the iTab delivers today's digital lifestyle to your notepad, and you name the price.

It's built upon the 12-inch iBook with the screen removed and a touchscreen added. From the pictures, the iTab appears to have a nice form-factor with rounded white edges. According to the Web site the Apple iBook hardware warranty is voided when the modify it to make iTab.

Another catch is that iTab doesn't ship with handwriting recognition and the touchscreen technology used in iTab is not compatible with InkWell, Apple's handwriting recognition technology. iTab is compatible (but doesn't ship with) KeyStrokes, a US$299 virtual on-screen keyboard application with multilingual word prediction, word completion, next word prediction and even multi-word prediction in any Roman language.

The iTab comes with a 1.33GHz PowerPC G4 processor, 512K L2 Cache, 512MB of RAM, 40GB HDD, slot-loading combo drive, 1024 by 768 pixel resolution, ATI Radeon 9550 graphics processor with 32MB of VRAM and AGP 4x support.

The iTab is not a stocking model, in fact, each iTab is built-to-order. According to the manufacture "The iTab is not built yet. We will build them as they are sold... We are selling them one at a time, through eBay auctions."

According to (an admittedly unscientific) MacPoll 35 percent of over 10,000 respondents would "definitely" buy a Mac tablet.

Would you buy an tablet Mac if it came from Cupertino and some of the bugs were addressed?