Apple's October 23rd Event

New iPad, iPad Mini, iMacs, Mac Mini, and MacBook Pros

Apple’s “We have a little more to show you” event turned out to be quite a bit more with the announcement of newly refreshed Mac Minis, the new MacBook Pro 13 With Retina Display, new 4th Generation iPad, the new iPad Mini, new iMacs, and updates to it’s iBooks and iBooks Author applications.

After 2 years of rumors and speculation the iPad Mini is finally a reality.  The device looks great with it’s 7.9 display, diamond cut bezel, and sporting the new Lightning Dock Connector.  Doubtless that Apple will sell a hojillion billion of these little guys.  With an entry level price of $329 this is the least expensive iPad ever, and will no doubt be a huge hit.

Apple also introduced the 4th generation of the full size iPad.  The new tablet has a faster CPU and graphics, improved LTE capability, and improved front camera, and Lightning connector.  With the exception of the A4-based iPhone 4/4S and the iPad 2 (which is still being offered as a stepping stone iOS device in between the iPad mini and iPad 4th gen), all of Apple’s new iOS devices are now utilizing the Lightning connector.

My personal favorite of the afternoon was the unveiling of the 7th generation iMac.  Apple makes the best all-in-one computer in the world.  They have done so since the introduction of the original Macintosh and with the exception of a misstep here and there (eMac? Macintosh TV?). They have always built the best all-in-one.  Today’s iMac is a beautiful computer, on the verge of sculpture.  The 27 inch model is simply stunning.

The new iMacs have a dramatically thin design.  The new housing accommodates a gorgeous backlit screen that sits flush against the glass thanks to a new lamination process that removes the air space between the glass and display.  The result is said to make text and images look like they are on top of the glass.  Can’t wait to get one in the iClinic lab to see for ourselves!

iMac is available in 21.5-inch and 27-inch sizes with prices starting at $1299 for a 2.7GHz quad-core Core i5-powered model. Upgrades available for the 21.5-inch iMac include a 2.9GHz quad-core Core i5 processor for $1499, while the 27-inch offering is a 2.9GHz quad-core Core i5 or 3.2GHz quad-core Core i5 for $1799 and $1999, respectively.  All iMac models are equipped with SDXC, USB 3.0, ThunderBolt and Gigabit Ethernet ports.

Apple also announced a new build to order option for the iMac and Mac Mini, the Fusion Drive.  The Fusion drive is a hybrid flash and standard hard drive.  The drive’s firmware works with OS X to intelligently gather the operating system and applications as well as frequently accessed documents onto the SSD portion of the drive, while dynamically moving less frequently accessed data on the standard drive. The idea isn’t new (anybody else own a Momentus XT Hybrid?) but the intelligent file handling in OS X is, and it looks like a great build to order option assuming it is priced reasonably.

The Mac Mini received an update too!  The line now has Thunderbolt and USB 3.0 ports and the latest Ivy Bridge chip set: a 2.5GHz dual-core Core i5 chip in the $599 model and a 2.3GHz quad-core Core i7 chip in the $799 model. Both Mac minis have improved graphics also.

With the exception of the Mac Pro (which hopefully will be refreshed soon, too)  the Mini is the only desktop Mac that still has FireWire ports now that the iMac has shed its own FireWire 800 port to make room for thunderbolt. 

Then there was the MacBook Pro Retina Display.  The 13’ MacBook Pro with Retina display is offered in two configurations:  a $1699 model with a 2.5GHz dual-core Core i5 processor and a $1999 model with the same processor but 256GB of flash storage.  Like its predecessor, the 15’ MacBook Pro with Retina Display, this Mac has no optical drive, and no FireWire ports.  It has the same port configuration as the 15 model:  2 ThunderBolt ports, HDMI, 2 USB 3.0 ports, MagSafe 2 power adapter port, and headphone jack.  We have a 15’ Retina MacBook Pro here at iClinic and we can say that the display is absolutely gorgeous.  I imagine the 13’ model although slightly more diminutive, will be just as pretty.  In fact, they are available to order today — so I think I’m going to go do that now and I’ll let ya know.

Apple continues to make awesome stuff and we at the iClinic love working on all these amazing products, and helping our customers get the most out of them.  If you need some help getting to know your new Apple product, give us a call and schedule an appointment with a Certified pro.  If your Apple device is not functioning properly leave it to the pros at iClinic to get it working again. From broken iPhone screens to Mac Pro logic boards and everything in between — we are your best choice for all things Apple from the moment you leave the Apple store.

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