Rumor: Apple and AT&T working on 3G MacBook

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Apple is one company that is never far away from rumors, in fact, it would be quite unusual for Cupertino to be rumor-free for a few months. After all, this is the company that has brought about plenty of innovation in the world of personal computers, and majority of their new releases in recent years have been preceded by rumors. This time round, the latest word depends on how someone interprets generic comments from an AT&T department president – could AT&T and Apple actually forge a partnership to release a 3G-enabled MacBook? For greater context, check out part of their conversation right after the jump.

Fortune had some words with Glenn Lurie, AT&T’s President of Emerging Devices Division, talking about netbooks as well as the emerging business model of subsidizing devices in exchange for one of the more popular two-year data subscription contracts. According to Lurie, AT&T’s holiday experiment with a $99 Acer Aspire One netbook that comes bundled with a contract for data service went “extremely well,” and this has prodded AT&T to look into other areas where they can expand their role in supplying data services to other devices. It sounds like a natural partnership where a 3G-enabled MacBook is concerned, especially when both parties are pretty happy with the iPhone arrangement to date.

Putting two and two together isn’t too difficult especially when you consider what was said alongside Apple’s statement from its Q1 2009 earnings call that claims the company is currently keeping a keen eye on the netbook space. It would be interesting to see where Apple prices a 3G-enabled MacBook if this rumor is true, but then again I’m prety sure people won’t really mind a $1,299 MacBook with always-on Internet connection, seeing how some were more than willing to fork out nearly half that price for a first generation iPhone when it was first released. How will iPhone owners feel with such a data plan tethered to a MacBook?

Source: Ars Technica

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