Apple — or, at least Steve Jobs — obviously loves touchscreen devices, so it’s just a matter of time until we see a touchscreen Mac. I suspect the iMac will be the first to make the move.

As we reported Thursday (, there is an an Apple patent involving touchscreen displays for computers. And earlier this year there were reports that Apple plans to launch a 22-inch touch-enabled iMac in addition to the current non-touch 21.5- and 27-inch iMacs.

There are some cool thinks you could do with such a Mac. Imagine being able to flip through album and movie covers on iTunes on your Mac the way you do on an iPhone or iPod touch. Or imagine flipping the pages of digital books and magazines with a finger. Even more importantly, a touch screen Mac would be helpful for who are disabled and have trouble using a mouse.

The iPhone and iPod touch have whetted our appetites for touch-screen devices. And the number of touchscreen devices, including computers, should more than double to 800 million by 2013, according to the iSuppli research group.

Apple laptops now have multitouch capability built into their trackpads. The time is approaching for the next step: some Mac desktops and laptops with touch features build into the screen.

And with all those fingerprints on your Mac’s glossy screen, the fortunes of screen cleaning profits will soar.

— Dennis Sellers