Feeds:
Posts
Comments

Archive for the ‘News & Analysis’ Category

by Tom Nelson

Apple sent out invitations to a media event it’s planning for March 21, 2016. The event will take place at the Town Hall Auditorium located on Apple’s Cupertino campus.

AppleWatch

Image courtesy of Apple

The use of the Town Hall Auditorium indicates a smaller scale announcement, one that will be attended mostly by those in the media that cover Apple, and not a large swath of users and developers. At the March event, Apple is expected to announce the following:

  • 4-inch iPhone SE
  • 9.7-inch iPad Air 3, thought to be named iPad Pro
  • New Apple Watch bands

Read more on About: Macs.

Advertisements

Read Full Post »

by Tom Nelson

Apple’s Magic Trackpad 2 is significantly different from the original Magic Trackpad. It looks different and feels different, although it can come close to mimicking the feel of the original, if that’s what you prefer.

MagicTrackpad2

Image courtesy of Apple

The reason for the change, and the ability to mimic the original, is the incorporation of Force Touch and the haptic engine that can simulate the feel of mechanical clicking. But the Magic Trackpad 2 includes other new features as well.

Magic Trackpad 2: New Look, New Battery

If there’s a unifying theme for the new Magic peripherals released by Apple in October of 2015 (Magic Mouse 2, Magic Trackpad 2, and Magic Keyboard), it’s the removal of the AA batteries that used to power the peripherals, and the addition of an internal rechargeable lithium-ion battery to supply power to the devices.

In the case of the Magic Trackpad 2, the new internal battery allowed Apple to redesign the original trackpad and eliminate the battery bump that used to house the AA batteries. This allows the tracking surface on the Magic Trackpad 2 to extend from the bottom edge to the top, where in the past it stopped short of the top, due to the battery compartment.

Read more on About: Macs.

Read Full Post »

by Tom Nelson

Apple’s updates to Mac peripherals continue to be magical, at least in Apple’s eyes; for end users, the jury is still out. The final results will be determined by how well the new Magic Mouse 2, Magic Trackpad 2, and Magic Keyboard sell.

MagicMouse2

Image courtesy of Apple

Magic Mouse 2

Let’s start with the Magic Mouse 2, the second version of the Magic Mouse, which is by far my favorite of all the mice I’ve ever used. And I’ve gone through my share of mice.

The Magic Mouse 2 underwent a slight evolutionary change that centers around the battery and its performance. Gone are the AA batteries that the user replaced when the batteries ran low. Instead, the new Magic Mouse has an internal rechargeable lithium-ion battery that Apple says can provide up to a month of use between charges.

That’s about twice the amount of time I get on the rechargeable alkaline batteries I use in my current Magic Mouse.

Read Full Post »

by Tom Nelson

Apple recently updated the entire 2015 iMac lineup, including the first 21.5-inch iMac with Retina 4K display. The 27-inch iMac lineup, however, got the best of the updates. The non-Retina iMacs are gone from the 27-inch lineup. If you’re going big, you’re going Retina; at least, that seems to be Apple’s take on the matter, and I tend to agree.

iMac27Retina2015

Image courtesy of Apple

Ever since the 2014 27-inch iMac with Retina 5K Display was released, we knew that, just like the MacBook Pro lineup, which kept non-Retina models for the short term (in the 13-inch models), in the long term, Retina was the direction Apple would go across the entire product space.

So, besides the all Retina lineup, the 27-inch iMac received some significant updates that will please anyone looking to squeeze out more performance.

Read more on About: Macs.

Read Full Post »

by Tom Nelson

Apple recently took the wraps off a new 2015 21.5-inch iMac lineup that uses new Broadwell-based processors, faster Intel integrated graphics, and, as expected, a new Retina 4K Display model, finally bringing Retina image quality to the smaller of the iMacs.

iMacRetinaHero2127

Image courtesy of Apple

The new 21.5 iMac lineup is divided into three basic configurations: a baseline and a mid-level model, both with the standard 1920 x 1080 display used in previous generations, and a high-end configuration that includes the Retina 4K display, with 4096 x 2304 pixels.

Processors

It’s been a long wait, but the 21-5-inch iMacs will be configured with Broadwell-based processors from Intel. On the bright side, the Broadwell chips will provide a nice boost in overall performance, when compared to the older Haswell-based iMacs. But I’m a bit surprised that the newest Skylake processors, which Apple incorporated into the 2015 27-inch iMac, weren’t included; this would have allowed Apple to just skip over the Broadwell family.

I imagine the issue was cost, as the Skylake processors are still very new, and continue to command a bit of a premium in price. However, let’s not get too wrapped up in the processor’s name, when what’s really important is how well the new iMacs will perform.

Read more on About: Macs.

Read Full Post »

by Tom Nelson

El Capitan was officially announced at the 2015 WWDC. Along with basic information, such as that the newest version of OS X would once again be available for free, and that there will be a public beta available starting in July, Apple also touched on a few of El Capitan’s new features. But they didn’t have time to mention all of the new features.

So, here’s a list of 5 new features I’m looking forward to that may not have gotten a lot of play at the WWDC keynote address.

MacBookElCapitan

Image courtesy of Apple

Photos for OS X

The talk around the WWDC is that Apple has opened up Photos to developers to write third-party extensions. This should allow Photos to support a wide range of new capabilities, including third-party editors.

Think of it this way: If you really prefer to edit images in Photoshop or Pixelmator, but you like the image management capabilities in Photos, you may soon be able to have your cake and eat it, too. All that would be needed is for the developers of your favorite image editing app to write a Photos extension that would launch their editor with your selected image.

Of course, these third-party Photos extensions won’t be showing up for a while, but when they do, Photos may become my go-to imaging system.

Read more on About: Macs.

Read Full Post »

by Tom Nelson

First up at the WWDC 2015 keynote address was OS X, which was a bit of a surprise as we’re used to seeing Tim Cook start the show by presenting a rundown on how well Apple is performing. Instead, Tim just told us it’s doing great. If you follow the company, you know that may be considered an understatement.

MacBookElCapitan

Image courtesy of Apple

OS X El Capitan is the new name for OS X 10.11. Although I predicted the name would be Mojave, El Capitan is a fine moniker.

As expected, El Capitan concentrates on performance and stability. But we knew Apple wouldn’t stop there, and there are a handful of new features and user interface changes.

Read more on About: Macs.

Read Full Post »

by Tom Nelson

WWDC (Worldwide Developers Conference) 2015 will take place from June 8 to June 12, and as expected, rumors are flying about what will be announced at the big event.

AppleWWDC2015

Image courtesy of Apple

WWDC has always been a bit of a mystery in terms of product announcements. With the show’s emphasis on Apple developers, we can almost always be correct in predicting that Apple will announce new versions of iOS and OS X at any WWDC event.

Trying to figure out what additional product announcements will be made is a bit like being a fortuneteller with a foggy crystal ball.

But this year is a bit different; there are a few new products that seem so likely to be announced that a crystal ball isn’t necessary. So, let’s start our list of WWDC predictions with the most likely to occur, and work our way down to those that are a bit far out.

Read more on About: Macs.

Read Full Post »

by Tom Nelson

As expected, Apple released updates to the 15-inch MacBook Pro lineup, as well as new versions of the 27-inch iMacs with Retina 5K display. In a bit of a surprise, Apple didn’t update to the newer Intel processor family; it stayed with the older Haswell lineup instead of moving to the Broadwell family. This could be a pretty good indication that Apple is just fed up with Broadwell and all the production delays, and will likely wait for the next product cycle (Skylake) from Intel.

imac5K2015

Image courtesy of Apple

15-inch MacBook Pro Updates

The 2015 version of the 15-inch MacBook Pro includes technology we’ve already seen in the new 12-inch MacBook; specifically, the Force Touch trackpad, with its haptic feedback system that provides a tactile pressure that simulates the way older Mac trackpads moved with each click, all with very little physical movement.

Read more on About: Macs.

 

Read Full Post »

by Tom Nelson

One of the tricks for getting insights into updated Apple product release dates is to keep an eye on Apple’s web store, and watch the delivery date estimates for standard builds of a product. A standard build should always be the same day, or at worst, 2 to 3 days. If the estimate goes out to 3 to 4 days, it could indicate a minor parts shortage. But if delays go out longer and stay in the longer range for more than a week or two, you may be looking at one of the indicators that Apple is getting ready to refresh a product.

PhotosiMac

Image courtesy of Apple

Apple likes to thin out inventory when a product update is about to be released. In this case, both stock versions of the 15-inch MacBook Pro have shipping estimates that range from 3 to 5 days, to 2 to 3 weeks. And those delays have been in place for a few weeks already. Likewise, one version of the stock non-Retina 27-inch iMac is also showing 1 to 2 weeks for a shipping estimate, while the Retina 5K iMacs remain available.

Read more on About: Macs.

Read Full Post »

« Newer Posts - Older Posts »