Apple Announces a 13-inch Retina MacBook Pro and a Super-Thin New iMac
Apple held a fairly routine event announcing new products this morning in California. You’ve probably already read about the new iPad mini (and the slight upgrade to its big brother), but much of the event also focused on new or updated Macs. A few of the announcements could be relevant to professionals and the businesses employing and supplying them.
The most fanfare went to the new 13-inch Retina MacBook Pro, which is the follow up to the update to the 15-inch MacBook Pro that happened this summer. Apple brands its product “retina” when the screen resolution is sufficiently high that the human eye cannot differentiate individual pixels at a normal usage distance. In the case of the 13-inch MacBook Pro, that means 2,560 x 1,600 resolution. Apart from the 15-inch model’s 2,880 x 1,800 pixels, that’s just about unprecedented in laptops.
It comes at a cost though, and it’s hard to make the case that the gorgeous new screen is important to productivity for anyone besides designers (who would doubtless prefer the 15-inch model for its more powerful graphics anyway) so if you do your own business’ IT, you’ll be glad to know that the non-Retina models are still available at a lower price point.
Additionally, Apple unveiled an updated version of the iMac, its all-in-one desktop favorite. It doesn’t have a Retina display as some wishful bloggers predicted (they are still prohibitively expensive at the iMac’s 21 and 27-inch sizes) but it’s 80% thinner at its thinnest point. Again, it’s largely an aesthetic change, but if you want your office to look state of the art, the machine is solid. The most attractive element for productivity is actually a new solid state hard drive for better performance on core applications.
We’ve looked over the pluses and minuses of going Mac over Windows or vice versa in your office and we’ve come to the conclusion that it really depends on what you’re doing and what your values are. But if you’ve decided on the Mac route, these new products are attractive; we’re just not convinced they’re worth the upgrade if you’ve already upgraded recently.