Apple have done it again with a new line up of innovative tech. They have unveiled a new iPad model; the iPad Air, updated the iPad mini and Retina display MacBook Pro’s. Also the Mac Pro will be available from December. But I think the best news was on the software front, as there are updated iLife and iWork suites for the Mac, iOS, and iCloud.com and the latest version of OS X Mavericks would be made available immediately with no charge!
Apple has produced a completely new iPad model: the iPad Air. The new model is significantly thinner than its predecessor and faster. The new model is 20 percent thinner than the fourth-generation model, and 0.4 pounds lighter, (it weighs exactly one pound). Additionally, while the iPad Air has the same 9.7-inch Retina display as its full-sized predecessor, the bezel around that screen is much smaller; 43 percent thinner than previous model. Inside sits a new 64-bit A7 chip and M7 co-processor. Apple says the new processors provide twice the CPU and graphics performance as the previous model, while retaining a 10-hour battery life. There are also improved FaceTime and iSight cameras; and dual microphones for improved audio capture and Siri. Both Wi-Fi and LTE models of iPad Air will ship November 1 and are availablein silver/white and space gray/black and they cost the same as the previous models.
The new iPad mini increases its screen resolution from 1024 by 768 pixels to 2048 by 1536 pixels while keeping the same 7.9-inch (diagonal) screen size. It also receives a 64-bit A7 processor, which Apple claim makes the Retina iPad mini up to four times faster for processor-intensive tasks and up to eight times faster for graphics tasks. The new iPad mini also features Apple’s M7 motion coprocessor. It also gets an upgrade to the camera. The iPad mini with Retina Display will be available in silver/white or space gray/black “later in November,” according to Apple. The Wi-Fi versions will cost $399 for 16GB, $499 for 32GB, $599 for 64GB, or $699 for 128GB. Cellular versions add $130 to each: $529, $629, $749, or $829, respectively. Apple is also keeping the original iPad mini at a lower price. The 16GB Wi-Fi iPad mini is now priced at $299 (down from $329), while the Wi-Fi + Cellular version will retail for $429.
Power Mac users are also happy as Apple announced the new Mac Pro will ship in December. The base $2999 configuration includes an Intel 3.7GHz Xeon E5 processor, 12GB of RAM, 256GB of flash storage, and two AMD FirePro D300 GPUs, capable of supporting up to three 4K displays. There is an upgraded $3999 model, which has a 6-core 3.5GHz Xeon E5 processor, 16GB of RAM, 256GB of PCIe-based flash storage, and two AMD FirePro D500 GPUs.
Retina MacBook Pro
Apple also revealed an updated versions of the Retina MacBook Pro. The new entry-level $1299 13-inch Retina MacBook has a 2.4GHz dual-core Core i5 processor, 4GB of RAM, integrated Intel Iris Graphics, and 128GB of flash storage. The model is also lighter, thinner and cheaper than the previous entry level model. There are also two upgrade models: A $1499 model has the same CPU, 8GB of RAM and 256GB of flash storage. The $1799 model has a 2.6GHz dual-core Core i5 processor, 8GB of RAM, and 512GB of flash storage. The new $1999 15-inch Retina MacBook Pro ($200 cheaper) has a 2.0GHz quad-core Core i7 processor, 8GB of RAM, Iris Pro integrated graphics, and a 256GB SSD. For an extra $600, you can upgrade to a 2.3GHz quad-core Core i7, 16GB of RAM and 512GB of flash storage.
Mavericks is now available from the Mac App Store, and even more significantly, it’s free! The new OS will bring key under the hood features to OS X, new versions of popular Apple iOS apps, and full support for multiple displays. Apple senior vice president of software engineering Craig Federighi spoke of some of the new features first demonstrated back in June, including Safari shared links, enhanced notifications, Finder tags, multiple display improvements, and new Maps and iBooks apps. OS X Mavericks will be available as a free download from the Mac App Store on OS X Snow Leopard or later. It’ll run on a 2007 iMac and MacBook Pro or later; 2008 MacBook, Macbook Air, or Mac Pro or later; and the 2009 Mac mini or later.
Finally, Apple unveiled a selection of new Mac and iOS apps, with updates to the iWork suite and iLife suite. The iWork apps; Pages, Numbers, and Keynote, now offer full file compatibility between OS X, iOS, and PCs via the iWork for iCloud service. The products have also been overhauled with new features. The new iWork apps are available now from the iOS and Mac App Store. Regarding the iLife suite; iPhoto, iMovie, and GarageBand for both the Mac and iOS, there are plenty of new features and updates including faster Photo browsing in iPhoto, easier browsing and speed controls in iMovie; and more tracks and a new Drummer feature in Garageband.
Overall, a fantastic line up packed with loads of new tech, new software and new innovations. Well done Apple, well done indeed.
[Image via: ocanada]