Clearly having not paid much attention to the troubles of hackintosh retailer Psystar
, an Illinois-based startup has announced its plans to offer a tablet running a full version of Mac OS X - without Apple's approval.
Feeling something between a cut-price version of Axiotron's ModBook
tablet - a completely legitimate device constructed from the remains of a custom MacBook - and your average homebrew hackintosh, Axon Logic's device is designed to offer a full Mac OS X experience at the same price point as the cut-down iPad.
Aiming for a $500 retail price, CrunchGear
claims that the slate will feature "netbook specs
" - which most likely means a 1.6GHz Atom-based processor, around 1-2GB of RAM, and either a 2.5" mechanical hard drive or an 8-16GB SSD. Unlike the rather feature-free iPad, Axon Logic's device will offer a trio of USB ports and an integral webcam. Interestingly, the company claims that future revisions of the hardware will feature a Core 2 Duo processor - which would perform significantly faster than the 1GHz chip found in the iPad.
That is, if the company stays around long enough for a second revision: unlike Axiotron's ModBook, which uses original Apple hardware with Mac OS X already legitimately installed, Axon Logic's device relies on a modified BIOS to allow Mac OS X to run on non-Apple hardware - a breach of the terms and conditions under which Apple licenses its software. As a result, it's likely to find itself feeling the heat of Apple's legal team - despite claims that it will offer the operating system as an install-it-yourself option rather than pre-installed.
Is this the device that the iPad should
have been? Could you see yourself spending the money on a slate if it runs Mac OS X, or would it have to come with the official Apple seal of approval? Share your thoughts over in the forums