At today’s big Apple event Apple took the wraps off a few big products. On the Mac front this meant new, thinner MacBook Pro with Retina Display’s running the latest Intel Haswell processors that have better battery life (up to 9 hours as opposed to 7 on the old models) and are faster, thinner and cheaper ($100 cheaper in the case of the 13 inch Pro, $200 in the case of the 15 inch version). But if you’ve already got a Mac what you’re gonna care about is this– Apple also today released their latest version of OS X called Mavericks as a free update. If you’ve got a Mac that can run Snow Leopard and has 2 GB of RAM (so a MacBook or MacBook Pro from 2007) you can get it for free today from the Mac App Store.
OS X Mavericks has many nice improvements like the ability to respond to iMessages right from the Notification Center as well as new apps like Maps and iBooks. Most importantly is how efficient Mavericks is. Not only will your Mac run faster, but Apple claims that just by installing Mavericks your Mac will get an extra hour of battery life. Yes, just by upgrading to this your Mac you’ll get faster and run longer. And since it’s free it’s even more of a must have.
Interested in seeing what Apple has to announce as it happens? Well you’re in luck. Apple has decided to stream todays big event on their website and you can watch it on Macs using Safari 4 (or later), Apple TV or on your iPad, iPhone or iPod Touch (as long as it’s running iOS 4.2 or later). Apple’s expected to show off a lot today including updates to the iPad and iPad Mini, MacBook Pro and Mac OS X.
We’ll have what you need to know wrapped up back here but if your interested in watching what happens live you can head on over to Apple’s site here. The event kicks off in a few minutes at around 1 PM EST/10 AM PST.
More info: Apple
While Apple released updates to the iPhone last month in the iPhone 5S and 5C they’ve been pretty quiet this year when it came to updating their other products like the iPad and the MacBook Pro. Well, just like it has been over the past few years Apple has scheduled one more big media event for next week, sending out invites this week saying that they have “a lot more to cover.”
So what can we expect? From the iPad side of things rumors are that Apple will introduce the iPad 5 and iPad Mini 2 with both coming in either space grey or white (like the iPhone 5S). Specs wise both are expected to get faster processors (A7 in the iPad 5, A6X in the Mini 2), better front and back cameras, and the iPad Mini is rumored to finally be getting a Retina Display to help it better keep up with the latest 7-8 inch Android tablets like the Amazon Kindle Fire HDX, Google Nexus 7 and Samsung Galaxy Note 8.0. There are also rumors that Apple will bring the iPhone 5S’ new Touch ID fingerprint scanner over to the new iPads.
Are these the cases for the iPad 5?
The new iPads are expected to have slightly updated designs with iPad 5 getting a bit thinner along the sides of the screen as seen above in the leaked pictures from Sonny Dickson. Pricing and storage options for the new iPads are expected to be the same as they are today, with a release rumored to be in early November, just like last year.
On the Mac side things are equally interesting. Apple announced their big software update for OS X back in June called Mavericks and its expected to be released before the end of the month. While Mavericks has some of nice new features the biggest is that its much more efficient with your computer, so things will run faster and better. It is so much more efficient that it may even give your current MacBook a boost in battery life.
And while Mavericks is expected to work on most recent Macs running Mountain Lion (10.8), Apple is also expected to finally update the MacBook Pro with Retina Display to Intel’s new Haswell processors and introduce a MacBook Air with a Retina Display. Both would be very welcome updates giving the Air a much better screen and the Pro much longer battery life. We also wouldn’t be surprised if Apple used this event to kill off the old MacBook Pro with a DVD drive (it’s the last Mac that’s sold with a DVD drive and the Pro with Retina is clearly the future). Basically, if you’re looking for new MacBook or a new iPad you should wait a little bit longer.
Of course since we’re talking about Apple it is possible they will have some surprises (an “iWatch” or Apple’s competitor to the Samsung Galaxy Gear is a big rumor floating around). The event is next Tuesday and we’ll of course cover everything you’re gonna need to know back here.
The MacBook Air and the MacBook Pro with Retina Display are two of the best computers available today. They are super thin, very fast, have solid battery life, and in the case of the Pro, has an amazing Retina Display that makes everything look great. The problem with both however has been their prices, with the 13 inch Pro with Retina Display starting at a particularly steep $1,700 and the higher spec’d 13 inch Air with 256 GB of storage (the one you’re most likely gonna want because you’re going to want since this has enough storage to last you the next few years) starting at $1,500. This week however Apple gave both the 13 inch Retina Pro and the higher spec’d 13 inch Air some nice price cuts, bringing the basic, 128 GB Retina Pro down $200 to $1,500 and the top Air down $100 to $1,400. If you use Apple’s student discount the prices are even better, with the Retina Pro dropping an extra $100 to $1,400 and the higher end Air going down to $1,349.
We really love the MacBook Pro and Air, and both are great options if you’re looking for a new computer for school. Personally, the 13 inch Retina Pro is the laptop I just upgraded to because it has that excellent portability that you find on the Air but it’s combined with the power the Pro line is known for (oh, and that Retina screen is pretty great too). Both laptops though should be more than fine if you mainly plan on using them for taking notes, writing papers and going online.
One upgrade we recommend however is getting the 256 GB hard drive for either the Pro or Air, particularly if you plan to store a lot of videos, music or photos. It is very hard to upgrade the storage on MacBooks after you buy them, and you’re going to want to make sure this thing is best suited to last for the next few years (if you plan on using your next computer mainly for notes and the internet, or have a backup hard drive for your music, photos and movies the cheaper 128 GB hard drive may work fine for you). The 256 GB 13 inch Retina Pro is now $1,700 without a student discount, $1,600 with (down from nearly $2,000 before).
The new price changes are live now on Apple’s site and you can check them out here.
If you’re looking for a new iPad, iPod or MacBook this holiday season you’re gonna want to listen up, as Apple just revealed their Black Friday deals. As expected there aren’t any major “doorbuster” deals to be found here, but there still are some solid discounts.
The iPad 4 has been given a $41 discount and now starts at $458 for the 16 GB WiFi model (with $51 and $61 discounts for the 32 GB and 64 GB WiFi only versions). The iPad 2 16 GB WiFi model got a $31 discount to $368, though if you want one of these we’d still recommend going with Walmart or Target’s deals instead. The new 5th generation iPod Touch (the one with the color back and 4 inch screen) has also been given a $31 discount and now starts at $268 for the 32 GB version. The older iPod Touch and new iPod Nano were each given their own small discounts, bringing their prices to $178 and $111 respectively.
The MacBook line is where the big discounts happen. Apple has taken $101 off of each of their MacBook lines– the MacBook Air, Pro and Pro with Retina Display. Of course this brings them to the same prices you could get the rest of the year if you use a student discount, with the exception being the base 11 inch MacBook Air which is now $898 (it’s usually $950 with a student discount).
Apple also dropped the prices on their iPad Smart Covers and Smart Cases, as well as for their headphones , routers and wireless mice and keyboards. And no, unfortunately there doesn’t look to be any deals for the iPad Mini or iPhone 5.
You can check out the full list over at Apple’s site here.
Over the last few weeks there has been a lot of talk that Apple had one more big event up its sleeves for 2012. Well, yesterday Apple confirmed all those rumors, sending out invites to an event next week, Tuesday, October 23rd.
One of the many “mock ups” of what the iPad Mini will look like (pic via Apple Insider)
So what can we expect? Well, according to the latest rumors Apple will be taking the wraps off a new, smaller and hopefully cheaper “iPad Mini.” As we wrote before, the iPad Mini is said to have a 7.85 inch screen (down from 9.7 inches on the regular iPad), a thin design with an aluminum back similar to the iPhone 5, the new Lightning port in place of the older iPod dock connector, as well as other standard iPad features like cameras on the front and back for FaceTime, iOS 6, and the availability to buy it in either WiFi only or WiFi+4G LTE versions. Specs wise its said to be similar to the iPad 2, with an A5 dual-core processor with 512 MB of RAM.
Now while this isn’t as powerful as the new iPad, it should still be fine for most things like browsing the web, using apps, reading books etc. And these “older” specs have their benefits as the rumors also say we can expect a cheaper price for the Mini iPad– the base 8 GB WiFi-only version possibly now starting at $249 or $299 and going up to $650 for the 64 GB WiFi+4G version (with options for 16 and 32 GB versions as well). If you want a cheap iPad for internet, apps and books– and don’t plan on storing lots of movies, pictures or music– this may be perfect for you.
There are also strong rumors that Apple is planning to finally introduce that long-awaited 13 inch version of the MacBook Pro with Retina Display, as well as reveal some new designs to the iMac and Mac Mini lines.
As always we’ll have it all covered for you back here. So make sure to check back on Tuesday for everything you’re gonna need to know about whatever Apple announces.
With school right around the corner and back to school shopping in full swing, it’s very tempting to go out and buy that new computer, phone or tablet. Stores such as Staples, Walmart, Amazon and Best Buy are all strongly advertising their back to school and Labor Day deals (in addition to the usual deals from Microsoft and Apple).
But while the deals may be great, we think you really might want to hold off on dropping a lot of money on those new gadgets. You see, the technology industry is right now in state of major updates. Pretty much every group of device– from Windows and Mac computers, to iPhone, Android, and Windows Phone, to the iPad and Kindle tablets– are due for major upgrades over the coming months. And when we say major upgrades we mean major upgrades. Read the rest of this entry
Still looking for a new MacBook Air or Pro for school this year? Well then you may wanna check out Best Buy. As part of their back-to-school promotion, Best Buy is giving any current or incoming college student with a .edu email address $100 off any new MacBook. Now while that sounds a lot like what Apple is doing, it’s even better. Best Buy is doing this on top of the price you would pay for the MacBook had you bought directly from Apple with a student discount.
In other words, look at it like this. The latest, cheapest version of the 11 inch MacBook Air (with 64 GB of storage) normally costs $999, or $949 with the student discount when you buy directly from Apple. Best Buy starts the pricing for this Air at $949, and when you then add their student discount you’re down to $849. The more powerful, base model of the 13 inch MacBook Air (with 128 GB of storage) is normally priced at $1,199, or $1,149 with the student discount from Apple. Best Buy starts the pricing for this same Air at $1,139, so with this $100 student discount this Air is now only $1,039… you get the point. It’s a great deal.
To get the deal all you have to do is go to Best Buy’s Student Deals site, enter that .edu email and print the coupon. That’s it.
Now as great as this is there are a few downsides. The first is you’ll need that .edu email address, so if you’re in high school that might be hard to get (though you could ask a friend or sibling to let you use theirs). You also can’t customize the MacBooks like you could if you ordered directly from Apple’s site, and Apple also gives you an $100 iTunes Gift Card as part of their back to school deal, something Best Buy doesn’t seem to match.
Oh, and you can only use the coupon once and you have to use it in a Best Buy store and have your student ID with you. Sorry no online ordering.
But hey, $849 for the latest MacBook Air is definitely one of the best back to school deals we’ve seen this year.
More info: Best Buy Student Deals
We know, we know– it feels like summer is only just beginning why are we starting to think about the next school year? Unfortunately as we all know all good things like summer must eventually come to an end and we have to return back to our regular ways of life and school– which we all know comes back way too quickly. As the back-to-school sales really begin over the next few weeks we want to help make sure you go back fully prepared, well, gadgets wise at least.
One of the toughest things today in back-to-school shopping is finding a new computer/tablet/phone that isn’t just cheap or good, but right for you and what you want and need it to do. We want to try to make this easier for you, and over the course of the rest of the summer we plan to have a whole bunch of posts and guides on good deals we see, some of our recommendations for a new computer, tablet or phone etc. In short, we’re here to help.
So with all that in mind we’re gonna kick off this back-to-school “series” with some tips on what you should look for when your out shopping for a new laptop for school and what are the basic specs that any 2011 computer you buy should have.
It looks like all the final pieces of OS X Lion are now finally coming into place. We knew the price ($29.99), we knew where to get it (Mac App Store), we knew the major new features to look forward to, and now we finally know that final missing piece: the date. Apple just announced that OS X Lion will be available tomorrow, July 20th, for all to download from the Mac App Store.
Apple of course hasn’t said anything about if there will also be new Macs to go along with the big release, but if there are you know that we’ll have all the info you need to know about them right here.
And for everything you need to know about Lion and what makes it so great make sure to check out our round-up post here.