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Apple refutes colour iBook claims

So did the leak refer to new PowerBooks or iMacs?

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Apple has denied claims made by Taiwanese notebook maker AlphaTop that it is working on new, colour iBooks equipped with wider displays.

AlphaTop said that's what Apple was up to last week when it reported to local press that it had won a significant contract to supply Apple with notebooks.

AlphaTop is one of a handful of Taiwanese PC makers who build around 90 per cent of the world's notebooks - including machines 'made' by big-name PC companies like Apple, IBM and Compaq.

Apple's denial is interesting, given the company's general reluctance to comment on rumours and speculation. Its vigorous denial suggests that the AlphaTop representative who made the claim was mistaken. And Apple is clearly concerned that AlphaTop's comments may impact iBook sales.

It certainly struck us that new iBooks coming so soon after the machine's launch seemed unlikely. Ditto the claim that they will have wider screens, since the iBook simply hasn't got the space in its current shell for one.

If the AlphaTop representative is correct, he's likely to be discussing an upcoming revision of the PowerBook G4, which is rumoured to be being upgraded this summer with a range of coloured metal cases. But that doesn't explain the wider screens.

Another option is the rumoured LCD iMac, which could sport multiple colours and a wider screen. Thanks to Apple's uniform motherboard architecture, an LCD iMac would essentially be an iBook in a different, desktop-oriented case, so using a notebook specialist like AlphaTop to build it isn't so surprising. ®

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