We've been tipped by our good pal Josh over at Notebooks that an issue may well be developing between Apple's newest suite of MacBooks and none other than technology's oldest enemy: magnets. The issue in question here was brought up to Josh regarding the MacBook Air 11" model, which we just happen to have here in front of us. thusly we tried it our for ourselves and indeed there is something strange going on. Your humble narrator also picked up the newest model MacBook Pro 15" yesterday so the test was done on it as well, and again the issue held true. What do magnets do to these new Apple machines? They basically give them a black eye. How does all this relate to the new iPad 2?
The "issue" arises when you've got a magnet, here we've got a tiny refrigerator magnet for example, and you pass it along the left side of the base of whichever machine you're working with. The actual spot this oddity comes up is right near the headphone jack on both computers. What happens is the monitor goes blank and your Wifi shorts out. What we can equate this to is the machine falling asleep - this holds true when you see the backlit key lights dim when the magnet passes over the area on the MacBook Pro near the headphone jack again.
List of actions:
Apply magnet - display falls asleep, fan stops
Remove magnet - display awakens
Apply magnet - display and key lights fall asleep, fan and disk continue running
Remove magnet - display and keys continue to be asleep, fan and disk stop
Apply magnet again - everything wakes back up
Also the magnet only sticks to 3 places on either model - near the power jack port, near the headphone jack (on the Pro, on the Air it's on the opposite side,) and at the corresponding place near the monitor that hits the original spot when the display is closed.
Therefor we can conclude that the technology Apple uses to turn your display off and on is run by magnets, and that the new iPad Smart Cover is and will be using the same or similar technology to turn off and on the iPad as it moves across its surface. Have a peek at the video above to see us working with the MacBooks and magnets, and below at the iPad Smart Cover video to see some cuteness!