They Are Here, But Will They Cut It? [Apple]
Apple has finally launched the new Macs, and as expected, the world is going crazy over comparisons and everything. Appleâ€™s Phil Schiller has been vocal about Microsoftâ€™s Windows 7 not having any negative effects on Appleâ€™s sales whatsoever. In fact, he said that it would actually drive people towards Apple with the complicated upgrading procedure. So are the new Macs up to the challenge?
The most interesting of the lot are definitely the new iMacs and the multi-touch mouse. The new Quad-Core iMac was heard coming long before, when the first rumors started circulating last month. Now that it is finally here, the differences from the old models are obvious. It has a stunning 27â€ display, Intel Core i5 (upgradable to Core i7) and has a huge screen space at 2560x1440 pixels.
But the excitement is not restricted to the highest model. The main thing that I would like to bring your attention to is the fact that all models (except the quad core) have Intel Core 2 Duo chips at 3.09GHz and have 4GB memory as standard. Plus, there is the brilliant new wireless Magic Mouse and wireless new keyboard that come standard with every iMac.
The Magic mouse is a brilliant piece of equipment. It has no buttons, is made out of aluminum and is topped off with a capacitive multitouch layer that works just like the MacBookâ€™s glass trackpad. You can touch anywhere and you can scroll the full 360Âº if the application allows it. The whole surface clicks like the glass trackpad and you can even get it to emulate the two-button mouse. I say this is the best non-gaming mouse till date. Plus the tracking is now optical, so the Magic Mouse can track without a mousepad and on almost all surfaces. Gestures are supported and so is accelerated scrolling. So comparisons to the iPhoneâ€™s multitouch features are fully justified.
The MacBook gets a polycarbonate unibody, with the same built-in battery as the MacBook Pro line. So it now has a 7-hour rated battery life. There have been subtle design changes - the most noticeable is the lack of the sharp edge that really bugged people on the previous models. The display is now LED backlit, making the MacBook more eco-friendly and energy efficient.
MacMinis have received speed and storage upgrades but everything else is pretty much the same. There is now a 2.53GHz Core 2 Duo, $999 server edition that packs in two 500GB HDDs, Mac OS X Server Snow Leopard and lacks a DVD burner.
So now that we know what Apple had up their sleeves, it is time to talk about how this will help them in their race against Windows 7 and the slew of new computers that will be released during and soon after the Windows 7 launch.
Appleâ€™s new strategy with iMacs is clearly to give users as much computing power as possible. The new entry point of 3.06 GHz and 4GB RAM is going to be a hit with the crowd because these are above average features at this time. So buying an iMac now would be a great thing because you will not have to upgrade for quite a while.
The new 27â€ Core â€˜5/i7 iMac is clearly an attempt to woo those professionals who want something more affordable than a Mac Pro but something more powerful that the previous generation iMacs. This new iMac is going to be a hit with visual designers and also with musicians. Both have a lot of use for large screen spaces. Designers can do side by side comparisons while musicians can now see more things on screen. I for one would use this with Logic Pro and place the mixer and the arrangement areas side by side during the final mix down.
The two Mac Minis And the MacBook [white] have been through smaller updates. They are not very different spec-wise but the MacBook has changed quite a bit physically. It doesnâ€™t seem like they will make much of an impact on their own but the price cuts are sure to bring in some more sales. To me, it seems like 2010 Q10 will be the bigger quarter for Apple and they will one-up Windows 7 with their tablet device. So this it for now and I donâ€™t think the new Macs and Windows 7 will suffer a lot from each other. That is because the high-end will still go for MacBook Pros and iMacs and the average consumer will be torn between the Mac Mini and myriad Windows 7 systems. However, the MacBook [white] is likely to make it to quite a few stockings this year.Advertisement
That mouse does sound interesting.
omg look at those prices!
Once again your paying for a name and not the hardware.
“and the consumer will be torn between the Mac Mini and myriad Windows 7 systems.”
Which consumers are we talking about? The Apple Mini owners wondering why they own one in comparison to what they could have for the same price? Not sure if it was a phrase mistake, but no one has a Mac Mini on their mind when a comparable, or even higher priced Win7 system is available.
I think it would be appropriate to mention when the post is PAID like this ad for Macs.
The post has not been paid for.
See, I thought that. So, how can you like one when you have never actually owned one. I always liked the idea of the iPod, so bought one, but the reality aint as good – the menu system is too minimalisitc and searching for a song or album when you have lots is a right PITA, plus, not being able to create playlists on the device is also so annoying. What’s the point in making a device that can hold 50,000 songs, when it is painfull to navigate through them all.
You really should get yourself a Mac so you can find out if the hype is all worth it.
First of all, thanks for commenting on my article. I love it when readers point out things that I was unaware of or have missed out on.
Second â€“ I wrote the post and I own, use and love Apple products. As Martin has rightly informed you, this post was not paid for. None of my posts are. When they are, I disclose that fact.
Now, you say that you dislike the menu system on iPod. Please do understand that the majority of iPod owners think exactly the opposite. The iPod has been praised over and over again for its intuitive menu system. In fact, the OS X itself has been praised for its ease of use. However, it is impossible to please everyone, so you are one of those people Apple has missed. Most of us like the simplicity and not having to waste time figuring out how to use a machine I just spent money buying. I would rather get to using my device in minutes, rather than hours. Which is why it is so easy to be clunky and complicated in the UI and so hard to be simple and minimalist.
Searching on the iPod through thousands is slightly tedious, I will partly agree on that point. But the click wheel makes it much easier because I can zip through them in seconds. If there is one REAL caveat with the iPods, it is their sound quality. That is where my audiophile nature gets the better of me. But other than that, no other device in its class has what the iPod has. To put its popularity over time into perspective, all you have to do is look up a chart for sales of iPods vs. comparable products (similar price range would do).
@everyone – If you are talking about about Apple, please find out their growth over the past 5 years. Go to http://www.google.com/finance?client=ob&q=NASDAQ:AAPL and click on the 5yr mark. Compare with Google (GOOG) or anyone. This last quarter, when almost everyone’s in the red, they actually had around 12% growth year on year.
I agree with you on the Audiophile point – the iPod does sound very very good. I just don’t like being tied in to using iTunes to manage my iPod, it seems very counter-intuitive that to make the best use of a PORTABLE MP3 player you have to manage it via a Desktop app!! So, to stick 2 fingers up, I use Floola instead – a little buggy, but doing so makes me feel all warm inside. I guess deep down I just have an irrational hatred of all things Apple, because they seem elitist and that is something I don’t like.
Martin is just a Mac fan, he’s always been a Mac fan from his earliest posts on this site. We just have to ignore this one minor problem with this site ;)
Yeah I dig Macs, love everything about Apple. Never owned one though but who cares :)
I don’t get that mouse. People hate touchpads. Mouse over touchpad is natural choice. So why give mouse all shortcomings of touchpad (poor control, ergonomics, no additional buttons) and none of benefits (fixed position on table) ?
I find it interesting that Logitech (THE manipulators company) never paid much attention to touchpads. Only in high-level remotes and that’s it I think.
PS it’s cute to see Apple get such a “warm” reception here at ghacks. :)