Thin, light, new keyboard, new trackpad, USB-C. Is it missing anything?
It is an exciting time for consumer technology, with gadgets and devices that once used to the stuff of dreams now coming to fruition. Currently, the focus and excitement is largely around mobile and wearable devices, but the stunning and groundbreaking Mac Pro (Late 2013) showed that Apple still has a keen interest in pushing the development and innovation of its computer product lines right to the edge of the design envelope. Although the new 12-inch MacBook with Retina display might look, at first glance, like a natural evolution of an Apple ultraportable MacBook, it packs a full suite of technical and design innovations that we feel make it the definitive statement of what's next in the state-of-the-art in notebook design. Read our full review for our analysis.
OSX compatibility, iPhone screen replacements and more
This week in the MacNN Forums, Moderator "andi*pandi&" recently scored a white MacBook and discovered they are able to upgrade the OS for free, but wonders if 10.10 would "run like a dead horse" on that machine, or if it would be all right. Yesterday, one Dedicated MacNNer announced the breaking of his wife's iPhone 4 screen, and has a few questions about buying a replacement.
Tapered batteries, soldered components both improve reliability and frustrate upgraders
A pair of new teardowns from iFixit and Laptopultra have revealed few surprises, and conclude that while the machines are easily openable, they are not easily repairable -- a factor that is likely to be very low-priority among potential buyers, given that the lack of moving parts in the unit also greatly improves reliability. While the new MacBook is completely un-upgradeable internally, the included USB Type C port will offer growing flexibility for any needed external connectivity or expandability.
Apple takes lessons from mobile to make the ultimate ultraportable notebook
The all-new 12-inch Apple MacBook is here and MacNN and Electronista have our hands on it! It is Apple's definitive statement on the future of notebooks, but it is available right now to customers who want to go along for the ride. If you're in the market for an ultraportable notebook made for the mobility age, the MacBook has to be on the top of your shopping list. There is nothing else quite like it on the market, with the device boasting several firsts for Apple and the industry.
Macs from $419
At Apple's online store today, take advantage of price cuts on refurbished Macs with prices as low as $419. The refurbished Mac mini with a 1.4GHz Intel dual-core i5 processor, 4GB of RAM and 500GB hard drive has been discounted by $80 to $419. Priced at $809, after a $240 discount, is the refurbished 11.6-inch MacBook Air with a 1.3GHz Intel dual-core i5 processor, 4GB of RAM and 256GB of flash storage.
MacBook Air from $759
Today at Apple's online store, save up to 22 percent off refurbished MacBook Air models. They start at $759 for the refurbished 13.3-inch MacBook Air with a 1.4GHz Intel dual-core i5 processor, 4GB of RAM and 128GB of flash storage. The 11.6-inch MacBook Air with a 1.3GHz Intel dual-core i5 processor, 4GB of RAM and 256GB of flash storage has been reduced by $240 to $809.
Standard versions ship in 1-3 days, but gold still more popular with some buyers
As they used to say on Twin Peaks, "it is happening. Again." A new Mac product available in gold appears, and buyers go crazy. The solid-gold Apple Watch, despite its $10,000 opening price, appears to have had its limited inventory snatched up quickly, pushing availability now back into August for online pre-orders after just the first few hours. Apple has likewise seen a "gold rush" for its similarly-colored (but not actually made of gold) new 12-inch Retina MacBook.
Base model can balloon to $1,749 with storage, processor upgrades
Apple's forthcoming $1,299 entry-level MacBook -- already a $100 premium over a comparably-equipped, more-powerful but Retina-less 11-inch MacBook Air -- will have build-to-order configurations available that can bump up the base model's 1.1GHz Intel Core M processor, along with larger storage options, that can raise the cost of the new notebook (scheduled to debut on Friday, April 10) to as high as $1,749, resellers report.
Ukrainian couple gets production sample of 12-inch Retina MacBook, makes 15-minute video
Following on the heels of an unboxing video for the forthcoming 12-inch Retina MacBook that surfaced in Vietnam, a new 15-minute video has appeared featuring a woman from Ukraine touting the new device, featuring a "production sample" she obtained. It was functional prior to the video and some tests were completed on it, but an attempt to update it to current OS X releases rendered the test machine inoperative, a security measure from Apple.
Staffers reflect on the fifth anniversary of the iPad, ponder the Surface 3
Presenting episode nine of The MacNN Podcast, which this week features a hands-on report on the new 2015 MacBook Pro, along with some chatting about the recently-revealed new MacBook benchmarks, well ahead of its April 10 debut. We also celebrate the fifth anniversary of the iPad by talking about the many ways, big and small, it has changed our lives. We discuss the new Surface 3 from Microsoft, the Doctor Who BBC bundle on BitTorrent, and more.
Performance comparable to 2011 MacBook Air, but longer battery life
Despite the unit not being available for another couple of weeks yet, an enthusiast in Vietnam has gotten his hands on a retail version of Apple's forthcoming 12-inch MacBook and posted an "unboxing" video. Separately, new benchmarks (now removed) for the machine show that while the new model can boast performance on par with an Intel Core i7, it would be an older i7 as found in a 2011 11-inch MacBook Air.
Users of new 13-inch MBP, forthcoming MacBook can take advantage of pressure sensitivity
The first third-party drawing app designed for the new Force Touch trackpad, found on the latest 13-inch MacBook Pro and the forthcoming MacBook, has arrived alongside an iMovie update from Apple that adds compatibility with the new technology as well. Inklet and Autograph from Ten One Design have been updated to support the pressure-sensitivity features, while iMovie has gained haptic feedback for certain commands.
New Pro, Air, MacBook now require Windows 8 or later; VMs still support Win7 for now
Apple's traditional zeal to push users forward extends even to its support for a rival platform, as the latest MacBook refreshes -- the new 13-inch MacBook Pro, 13-inch MacBook Air, and the forthcoming MacBook -- now require Windows 8 or later to work with Boot Camp, Apple's tool to create a dedicated Windows partition for users who need the compatibility. The company first dropped Windows 7 with the latest Mac Pro in 2013.
Macs for $929 or less
Right now at Apple's online store, find a variety of refurbished Macs priced at $929 or less. They start at $809 for the refurbished 11.6-inch MacBook Air with a 1.3GHz Intel dual-core i5 processor, 4GB of RAM and 256GB of flash storage. Priced at $829 is the refurbished 13.3-inch MacBook Pro with a 2.5GHz Intel dual-core i5 processor, 4GB of RAM, 500GB hard drive and 8x double-layer SuperDrive.
Our panel still talking about 'Spring Forward' event ramifications
The MacNN Podcast episode six is now available (later than normal -- sorry about that), and this week we looked at the new MacBook and weigh up its pros and cons; talk about Apple Watch pricing and some new details that have come out since last Monday; delve into ResearchKit, which is already making big waves in the medical community; discuss Samsung's Galaxy S6 and the line's fading status as an "iPhone killer" (though still likely to be a very successful competitor); and get into the actual meat of the FCC's net neutrality and Title II proposal.
MacBook Returns, home network bugs and more
This week in the MacNN forums, members discussed the new MacBook, home networking and more. One of this week's most popular topics was the news that Apple will be bringing back the "MacBook" name for their next notebook computer. Yesterday, Mac Elite "Helmling" was trying to figure out what was going on with his home network, as computers appear to be replicating in the Network settings.
The MacBook is a solid machine, stop being annoyed it's not for you
Another Apple announcement has come and gone, and while we did get the Apple Watch details we were expecting, we got a bit more. Apple has resurrected the MacBook -- and this time, not clad in plastic. The attractive machine, and by association, Apple itself, is garnering a fair amount of Internet hate, regardless of new technologies, because on some levels it doesn't appeal to -- nor is it aimed at -- power-users.
WaterField Designs unveils Zip Brief for new MacBook
Accessory maker WaterField Designs announces the refined Zip Brief, created to protect and showcase the new 12-inch Apple MacBook. The Zip's internal pockets cradle the MacBook on one side and accessories on the other, and offer an angled front pocket that can hold a smartphone, wallet or commuter pass. The exterior combines leather with waxed canvas or ballistic nylon. TSA-friendly, the Zip can be fully opened for airport security while contents remain safely secured. The Zip Brief can be pre-ordered now for $180, with shipping starting at the end of March.
Drives use same aluminum finish as new MacBook
LaCie, the premium brand of Seagate Technology, announced on Tuesday the addition of USB–C technology to its Porsche Design Mobile Drive. Besides being compatible with Apple's implementation of USB-C on the new MacBook without the need for adapters, this new technology makes the LaCie Mobile Drive easy to connect, since both ends of the cable are identical, and the connector is reversible. The change also takes advantage of USB 3.1's ability to transfer up to 10Gbps bi-directionally, a doubling of the capability of USB 3.0.
Our staff weighs in on the highs, lows and 'what the?' moments
Today's "Spring Forward" event in San Francisco lived up to the hype, generally, with strong performances from the Apple executive team, richer demonstrations of the Apple Watch and more importantly, the diversity of apps that will be available for it, and a somewhat-surprising return of the MacBook consumer notebook, which is likely to displace the MacBook Air in time. Apple also brought out the unexpected ResearchKit, and cut the price of the Apple TV. We asked some of our staff for their thoughts.
Most extreme and efficient notebook ever, says Schiller
Apple on Monday surprised observers with the unveiling of a new MacBook, featuring a 12-inch Retina display, a motherboard that is 67 percent smaller than even the MacBook Air, a new fanless design that is even thinner than the Air, but retains the all-day battery life. The new MacBook comes in at two pounds even, and also features an all-new keyboard and trackpad, with a a new single USB-C port for most connections. It will be available in three colors, matching the current iPhone line.
Store goes down hours ahead of Apple Spring Forward event
Apple has brought down the online Apple Store, ahead of its Spring Forward event later today. Expected as part of any major Apple event, the store went down at 8am ET/12pm GMT, hours before the event is due to take place, allowing the company time to make changes to product listings and to add new items, ready for when the store becomes available again shortly after the event ends.
Macs from $419
Today at Apple's online store, find big savings on refurbished Macs with prices as low as $419. The refurbished Mac mini with a 1.4GHz Intel dual-core i5 processor, 4GB of RAM and a 500GB hard drive has been discounted by $80, to $419. A $130 discount is available on the refurbished 11.6-inch MacBook Air with a 1.4GHz Intel dual-core i5 processor, 4GB of RAM and 128GB of storage, now $769.
Excellent free app psychoanalyzes your batteries
The curiously-named CoconutBattery 3.2 is a free app that examines the batteries in your MacBooks and your iOS devices. One click and you know everything: it gives you the skinny on every possible scintilla of information about the state your battery is in.
MBPs, iMacs, MBAs and Mac minis under $1,000
At Apple's online store today, buyers can take advantage of a wide range of refurbished Macs that carry price tags lower than $1,000. Starting at $999 and working our way down is the refurbished 13.3-inch Retina MacBook Pro with a 2.5GHz Intel dual-core i5 processor, 8GB of RAM, and 128GB of flash storage. For $929 is the 13.3-inch MBP with 2.5GHz i5 processor, 4GB of RAM, a 500GB hard drive, and a SuperDrive.
Beats headphones, iOS devices, MacBook all leaders in their respective categories
A new survey measuring customer loyalty and engagement has picked several categories of Apple products as the best in their field, at least in the minds of consumers. Beats headphones were the top most-liked headphone brand, the combined MacBook lines took best laptop, and the iPhone and iPad unsurprisingly won best smartphone and tablet, respectively. The Consumer Loyalty Engagement Index measures how well a product meets -- or exceeds -- consumer expectations.
Asian version of US ad plays to Chinese market, gift-giving season
Apple has created a new version of its holiday ad "The Song" for the Chinese market in time for the Lunar New Year celebrations, which commence later this month. The wholly-reimagined ad is prominently featured on the company's China website, and is the first such ad made directly for China. Senior VP of Retail Dame Angela Ahrendts has made China a priority over the next two years as it emerges as Apple's third-largest market.
Replacements last longer than original hardware
Add-on outfit NewerTech has added some additional NuPower batteries for some of Apple's older unibody MacBook models. These include 13-inch basic MacBooks from 2009 and 2010, and the 2011 edition of the 17-inch MacBook Pro. NuPower batteries are claimed to last up to 50 percent longer than Apple's pre-installed hardware.
Macs from $849
This week at Apple's online store, find savings on Macs starting as low as $849 for a 13.3-inch MacBook Air with a 1.4GHz Intel dual-core i5 processor, 4GB of RAM and 128GB of PCIe-based flash storage. For $869 is the refurbished 11.6-inch MacBook Air with a 1.3GHz Intel dual-core i5 processor, 4GB of RAM, and 256GB of flash storage.
Satechi announces its Premium Aluminum Monitor Stand product at CES
Accessories producer Satechi has announced the upcoming release of its new Premium Aluminum Monitor Stand product. Introduced this week at CES, the stand is designed to compliment the Mac Pro, iMac and Macbook's aesthetic, raising monitors to prevent eye and neck strain. Aside from providing height, the stand also features four USB 3.0 ports for connecting applicable devices, offering transfer rates of up to 5GB per second. Its aluminum alloy composition supports a range of devices weighing up to 200 pounds. Priced at $70, Satechi's new monitor stand will be available by the end of the month.
Macs from $419
At Apple's online store this week, find refurbished Macs on sale for as low as $419. The refurbished Mac mini with a 1.4GHz Intel dual-core i5 processor, 4GB of RAM and a 500GB hard drive has been discounted to $419, for a savings of $80. Priced at $769, after a $130 discount, is the refurbished 11.6-inch MacBook Air with a 1.4GHz Intel dual-core i5 processor, 4GB of RAM and 128GB of PCIe-based flash storage.
Separate suit over 2011-era graphic card issues ongoing
US District Court Judge William Alsup has dismissed a lawsuit against Apple filed in San Francisco that alleged the company made, sold and knew about defective logic boards for its MacBook line of computers from mid-2010 onwards, but did nothing to correct the issue. The judge said that the plaintiffs had failed to prove that Apple misrepresented the equipment, and noted that in both of the two men's complaints about the failed motherboards that they had been able to use their computers normally for up to two years.
two operating systems, one Mac
Today in the MacNN forums, one Dedicated MacNNer was asking if it was possible to run two different versions of OS X on the same Mac, as they are planning on replacing their original drive with a solid state drive. Grizzled Veteran "PHoynak" is looking for a way to use their old white MacBook as a second display with a 27-inch iMac, and wonders if anyone has any advice on how this could be accomplished.
refurbished Macs from $769 and iPads from $309
Today at Apple's online store, save on refurbished Macs as low as $769 and iPads from $309. The refurbished 11.6-inch MacBook Air with a 1.4GHz Intel dual-core i5 processor, 4GB of RAM and 128GB of solid state storage is available for $769 after a $130 discount. Priced at $309, after a $70 discount, is the refurbished iPad mini with Wi-Fi + Cellular for AT&T and 16GB of storage.
MacBook Pro vs. MacBook Air
Today in the MacNN forums, Dedicated MacNNer "ClaraT" reported that her six-year-old MacBook is starting to have intermittent graphics issues where her screen will go black, and is now contemplating getting a new system; however, she is looking for advice on what to buy -- a MacBook Pro, or MacBook Air. Yesterday, Senior User "mkerr64" was considering upgrading the graphics card in his Mac Pro, and is wondering if the PSU has will be powerful enough.
Macs as low as $769
This week at Apple's online store find low prices on refurbished Mac models starting as low as $769. The refurbished 11.6-inch MacBook Air with a 1.4GHz Intel dual-core i5 processor, 4GB of RAM and 128GB of PCIe-based flash storage has been dropped by $130 to $769. Priced at $799, after a $150 discount, is the refurbished 13.3-inch MacBook Air with a 1.3GHz Intel dual-core i5 processor, 4GB of RAM and 128GB of flash storage.
refurbished rMBPs from July 2014
Just added to Apple's Online Store are a selection of current-model 13.3-inch Retina MacBook Pros, starting as low as $1,099. A $200 discount is offered on a Retina MacBook Pro configuration with a 2.6GHz Intel dual-core i5 processor, 8GB of RAM and 128GB of flash storage, now $1,099. Priced at $1,439 is the refurbished 13.3-inch MacBook Pro with a 2.6GHz Intel dual-core i5 processor, 16GB of RAM and 256GB of flash storage.
Retina MacBook Pros starting at $1,019
Right now at Apple's online store, find bargain prices on refurbished Retina MacBook Pro models. The refurbished 13.3-inch MacBook Pro with a 2.4GHz Intel dual-core i5 processor, 4GB of RAM and 128GB of flash storage has been cut by $180, and is now down to $1,019. A discount of $210 drops the cost of the 13.3-inch Retina MBP with a 2.4GHz Intel dual-core i5 processor, 8GB of RAM and 256GB of solid state storage down to $1,189.
Macs from $769
Right now at Apple's online store, there is a wide range of refurbished Macs at low prices. The 11.6-inch MacBook Air with a 1.4GHz Intel dual-core i5 processor, 4GB of RAM and 128GB of solid state storage is available for only $769, after a $130 price break. A $150 discount drops the price on the refurbished 13.3-inch MacBook Air with a 1.4GHz Intel dual-core i5 processor, 4GB of RAM and 128GB of flash storage down to $849.
MacBook Pros, 4K HDTVs and Bluetooth speakers
Until today at B&H.com, get the 15.4-inch MacBook Pro with Retina display on sale for $2,199. That's $400 less than the original MSRP of $2,599, and the lowest price we have seen on this configuration by $100. Also with this deal, save $40 off a Canon Pixma wireless printer, $50 off Timbuk2 Commute and get a free copy of LoJack. This MBP features a 2.3GHz Intel Core i7 Crystalwell processor, 16GB of RAM and 512GB of PCIe-based flash storage. Included is a one-year limited warranty on parts and labor from Apple.
bargain priced MacBook Pros from $929
Save big on refurbished MacBook Pro models at Apple's online refurb store, with prices starting as low as $929. The refurbished 13.3-inch MacBook Pro with a 2.5GHz Intel dual-core i5 processor, 4GB of RAM, 500GB hard drive and 8x SuperDrive has been reduced to $929, a savings of $170. A $180 price break drops the price on the refurbished 13.3-inch Retina MacBook Pro with a 2.4GHz Intel dual-core i5 processor, 4GB of RAM and 128GB of solid state storage down to $1,019.
Violations include excessive overtime, lack of protective gear
Another Apple supplier, Catcher Technology, is being accused of violating labor and safety standards, according to The New York Times. The paper says that two groups -- Green America, an environmental non-profit, and China Labor Watch -- have found that workers at a Catcher-owned factory in Suqian, China are being forced to work excessive overtime and in unsafe conditions. Although Catcher has contracts with other electronics firms, Apple is a major client, for whom it produces metal iPad and MacBook shells.
MacBook Pro configurations from $929
Right now at Apple's online store, chose from a wide selection of refurbished MacBook Pro models with prices as low as $929. The refurbished 13.3-inch MacBook Pro with a 2.5GHz Intel dual-core i5 processor, 4GB of RAM, 500GB hard drive and a 8x SuperDrive has been reduced by $170 to $929. The refurbished 13.3-inch MacBook Pro with a 2.4GHz Intel dual-core i5 processor, 4GB of RAM and 128GB of flash storage has been cut by $180 to $1,019.
Macs for $1,019 or less
Right now at Apple's online store, find bargain prices on refurbished Macs with many priced at $1,019 or less. The refurbished 13.3-inch Retina MacBook Pro with a 2.4GHz Intel dual-core i5 processor, 4GB of RAM and 128GB of flash storage has been reduced to $1,019, for a savings of $180. A $170 discount drops the price on the refurbished 13.3-inch MacBook Air with a 1.3GHz Intel dual-core i5 processor, 4GB of RAM and 256GB of flash storage down to $979.
13.3-inc rMBP for $1,450
At Adorama.com this week, get the 13.3-inch Retina MacBook Pro on sale for $1,449. That's $250 less than the MSRP of $1,699, and the lowest price we have seen on this Mac model by the same price margin. Free US shipping is included, but sales tax is applied for residents of New York state. This MBP features retina display, a 2.6GHz Intel Core i5 processor, 16GB of RAM and 128GB of flash storage. It is backed by a one-year warranty on parts and labor from Apple.
5 MacBook Air models for $979 or less
Right now, Apple's online store is offering refurbished MacBook Air models at low prices, with five configurations landing at sub-$1,000 price points. The refurbished 11.6-inch MacBook Air with a 1.3GHz Intel dual-core i5 processor, 4GB of RAM and 128GB of flash storage has been reduced by $130 down to $719. A refurbished 13.3-inch MacBook Air, originally released in June 2012, with a 1.8GHz Intel dual-core i5 processor, 4GB of RAM and 128GB of flash storage has been cut by $420 to $779.
refurbished Macs from $719
This week at Apple's online store, save big on refurbished Mac models starting as low as $719. The 11.6-inch MacBook Air with a 1.3GHz Intel dual-core i5 processor, 4GB of RAM and 128GB of flash storage has been cut by $130 to $719. A $150 discount is offered on the refurbished 13.3-inch MacBook Air with a 1.3GHz Intel dual-core i5 processor, 4GB of RAM and 128GB of flash storage.
WaterField updates Outback Solo and Indy satchel bags for refreshed MacBook Pro Retina laptops
WaterField has announced the release of new sizes for two of its bags, designed to fit the previous and refreshed MacBook Pro Retina laptops. The new 15-inch Outback Solo will fit the 15-inch MacBook Pro Retina, and the new 13-inch Indy leather satchelfits the smaller Retina.
Incase introduces new thin, lightweight sleeve for MacBook Pro, iPad
Mac accessories producer Incase has announced the introduction of its newest sleeve case for MacBook Pro and iPad. The Icon Sleeve features a construction comparable to that of performance footwear, offering lightweight framing material that can absorb shock. The sleeve protects the device on its outer edge, making it less vulnerable to damage. Its sleeve panels are neoprene, featuring soft flexibility. Priced at $60, the Icon Sleeve is available online through Incase and at Apple store locations.
budget priced Macs from $719
Today Apple's online store has a variety of refurbished Mac models on sale, starting as low as $719. The refurbished 11.6-inch MacBook Air with a 1.3GHz Intel dual-core i5 processor, 4GB of RAM and 128GB of flash storage has been reduced by $130 to $719. A $150 discount drops the price on the refurbished Mac mini with a 2.3GHz Intel quad-core i7 processor, OS X Server, 4GB of RAM and dual 1TB hard drives down to $849.