Didn’t we all know deep down inside that at some point Apple CEO Steve Jobs was going to get iOS into all of the company’s devices?  There is just too much money to be made from the App Store for the company not to try to shoe horn it into everything possible, and that includes the popular all-in-one iMac computers.

According to Patently Apple, Apple quietly went through the European patent system to file a claim on a new iMac with a touchscreen interface.  The idea is that it would run Mac OS X when its normal, upright position, but once you grabbed it and used the new hinged stand to move it to a different orientation, it would switch over to running iOS, the same software that powers the iPhone, iPod Touch, iPad and the rumored iTV.

iMac Touch

The full patent application is a snooze to read, but it details multiple ways that iOS could be activated such as using an accelerometer, designating a specific area of the screen you would touch to change between operating systems and a proximity sensor that would tell when you were using the keyboard & mouse amongst a couple of other cool tricks.

iMac Touch

The patent also talks about the possibility of a MacBook that would do the same thing, although it isn’t quite as detailed.

I’ve been predicting for some time that iOS would make its way on to the company’s computers, I just wasn’t sure how they were going to pull it off.  Leave it to Apple to come up with magical trickery that will make it seem seamless.  Just as apps had to be rewritten for the iPad, so will they have to be upgraded for the iMac’s larger displays.  Hopefully app makers will be given plenty of heads up on this so they can prepare.

Apparently the patent process was begun back in Jan. when we were all focused on the iPad coming out, but now the filings are trickling out to the public as they are want to do.  We highly recommend you hit up the original article for even more diagrams and descriptions of what all Apple was looking to lay claim to.

What say you?  Are you interested in such a merging of Apple’s two operating systems?

iMac Touch UI