Brilliant folding touchscreen MacBook concept is almost a reality

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Astra HQ’s MacBook concept has a flexible touchscreen in place of the keyboard and trackpad.
This MacBook concept has a flexible touchscreen in place of the keyboard and trackpad.
Photo: Astro HQ

Astro HQ, makers of Luna Display, dreamed up a macOS laptop concept with a foldable display that covers the entire interior of the MacBook. The design includes a touchscreen and Apple Pencil support.

Artists’ concepts are often impractical dreams for the future but a version of this can be assembled right now. Sort of.

The folding MacBook concept

Astro HQ’s industrial designer, Federico Donelli, came up with a design for a MacBook whose flexible screen stretches down  to where the physical keyboard and trackpad sit on current laptops.

“Our concept design pushes the Mac and iPad to new boundaries. By enabling touch and Apple Pencil interactions on the display, we’ve created new opportunities for creative workflows that would otherwise be limited by a mouse and keyboard, such as photo retouching or freehand illustration,” the company said in a blog post.

In addition, the designer also envisions this computer screen turned horizontally, stretched out flat, and turned into a single large screen. This would ack as a portable desktop.

Concept as reality

Anyone interested in such a dual-screen Mac doesn’t have to wait. A rough approximation of one can be made today.

With Luna Display, an iPad can be used as a second screen for a MacBook. And Astra HQ points out that a 12.9-inch iPad Pro placed over the keyboard of a MacBook Pro or MacBook Air effectively creates a large, flexible display. Add a wireless keyboard, mouse and Apple Pencil, then get to work.

Put an iPad with Luna Display over a MacBook’s keyboard to make a dual-screen laptop.
Put an iPad with Luna Display over a MacBook’s keyboard to make a dual-screen laptop.
Photo: Astro HQ

Donelli came up with this arrangement after he bought a new 13-inch MacBook Air.“To my surprise, the surface area of my new Mac matched up perfectly with my 12.9″ iPad. That’s when I started imagining creative ways that I could combine them using Luna Display. This setup provides more screen real estate, along with the flexibility to use my iPad for drawing and annotations with the Apple Pencil.”