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Apple patent application details magical mouse with a built-in display

Donald Melanson, @donmelanson
January 21, 2011
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Could the Magic Mouse be replaced by an even more "magical" input device? It might, if a just-published Apple patent application ever results in an actual product. Described simply as a "computer input device including a display device," the application clearly details a mouse that would have both a touch-sensitive surface and a built-in display. That, the application suggestions, could open up a whole range of new input possibilities, including using the mouse as numeric keypad, a phone, a personal digital assistant, or a graphics pad, to name just a few. What's more, the nature of the collimated glass used for the mouse would also apparently allow it to display a magnified image of anything underneath, and the images displayed would seemingly appear to be directly on the surface on the mouse, and not appear to be under the glass (we're not talking about a regular capacitive touchscreen on a mouse here). Of course, all of this is still just a patent application, and Apple has a long, long string of those that have yet to result in anything -- still, something about this one strikes us a bit more likely than, say, a head-mounted iPhone display.

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