MacBook Pro Release Date 2012: Problems Liquidmetal Technology Could Pose at Launch

By : Subscribe to IBTimes's | April 25, 2012 1:32 AM IST

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The most recent rumors surronding the  highly anticipated revamped MacBook Pro and iPhone 5 are that both devices will be released with ultra-thin chassis cast from Liquidmetal technology. 

While the prospect is an exciting one, it doesn't seem realistic. Apple currently adopts the technology for its SIM Card ejector on the iPhone 4S, and while it's expected to be more heavily implemented in future Apple products, an entire chassis that uses the technology could pose a few problems. 

The material itself isn't actually liquid. It's a mix of titanium, nickel, copper, and zirconium, which results in a tough and tight finish that feels as smooth as glass or liquid. But how does it handle heat? The material is a far poorer heat conductor than aluminum, according to research carried out by ZDnet. 

The smaller iPhone device may be able to pull it off, but it might not be able to handle the heat levels of a full functioning laptop, like the MacBook Pro, which is prone to heating up after a few hours of use. The computers cooling system would have to be re-designed if Apple decided to use Liquidmetal technology for the entire chassis of the Pro. 

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Another obstacle the technology might pose is related to connectivity. The metal may not be transparent enough to read Wi-Fi and Bluetooth signals as well as aluminum. 

Apple only recently purchased worldwide exclusive rights to Liquidmetal technology, which was discovered at the California Institute of Technology in 1992. It's likely the company will test out the material before fully encapsulating its products with it. 

It is expected that the new iPhone will come with a back case made out of the material. This will result in a thinner case and give a lighter feel to the phone. If the iPhone 5 adopts the metal for its screen, it will result in a much stronger--scratch proof-- display, making the phone much more durable overall.

The rumors have been supported by several analysts and publications. The next flagship phones of [Apple and Samsung] are expected to adopt unprecedented materials for their main bodies, that is, ceramic for the Galaxy S3 and liquid metal for iPhone 5, both being thin, light and highly resistant to external impacts," the Korean publication ET News reports.

Meanwhile here's what Mac enthusiasts are awaiting to see in the new MacBook Pro, which is expected to be resigned and released in June:

Thinner Design: Since the release of the ultra-thin and light MacBook Air, MacBook Pro users have complained the case of the laptop is comparatively clunky. The current version of the computer weighs 4.5 pounds, which is almost double the weight of the Air. A potential re-designed MacBook pro is expected to come with a lighter case that is slightly thicker than the MacBook Air, but considerably lighter than the current MacBook Pro. 

Retina Display: Since the launch of the new iPad, which came with a revolutionary 2048 x 1536, 3.1 million-pixel Retina Display, Apple fans are eager for MacBook laptops and iMac desktops to include the feature. The MacBook Pro and the iMac are the most likely candidates for the Retina Display as some of its features could compromise the ultra-thin and light qualities of the MacBook Air. A laptop with a Retina Display would also require a bigger battery to cope with the display, which would result in a thicker case, larger than that of the MacBook Air.

Intel Ivy Bridge Processor:  Intel's Ivy Bridge is one of the most anticipated and likely features of the new MacBook Pro. The next generation Intel chips launched on April 23. Intel's Vice President has revealed that its upcoming Ivy Bridge Processor will be built for Retina Display computers, 9to5Mac reported, which has spurred rumors that the MacBook Pro will be equipped with both the lightning-fast processor and the revolutionary display. 

IPad/MacBook Hybrid: While it's highly unlikely, Apple fans have expressed interest in an IPad/ MacBook hybrid, similar to the ASUS Transformer Prime series. "Apple gives us a MacBook with a detachable screen that runs like an iPad," Twitter user "Apple Likes" tweeted.  While it's an interesting concept, the hybrid would merge two product sales into one, which is unlikely to happen anytime soon. Especially from Apple, who has always developed all its products separately.

Anti- Glare Screen:  In the past, MacBook users have complained about glare on their screens. An anti-glare display will mean that the MacBook can be used under more lighting condition with the distractive highly reflective-glare of the screen.

Release Date: Current release rate rumors are set for June. Several authorized resellers, including Best Buy's online store, are reporting that the 15-inch MacBook Pro is out of stock, which has spurred rumors that the release is fast approaching. 
Apple TV went through a similar stock shortage at second party retailers in March, and it was not long after the reports of inventory constraints that Apple launched the new revamped version of Apple TV, alongside the new iPad.

MacBook Pro Perfume: When Apple enthusiasts go to un-box their MacBook Pro, its smell is probably the last thing they will worry about.  But a group of Australian artists have developed a scent in collaboration with Air Aroma for an exhibition. The small has been designed specifically for the un-boxing of the new MacBook Pro, according to NVO News." A few months ago these young artists approached Air Aroma seeking assistance with creation of a unique fragrance for their upcoming art exhibition. The aroma requested for the project was the scent of an Apple product being opened for the first time," says Alex Cosic of Air Aroma on its official website. It's unlikely the perfume will make it into the boxes of the next generation MacBook Pro, but you never know; it might feature in future products.

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