Thursday, 21 October 2010

'The future of laptops': Steve Jobs unveils new Apple MacBook Air - the super-thin computer that weighs just 2.3 pounds


Apple's latest thinner MacBook Air 11" (L) and 13" models and new operating system at a news conference at Apple headquarters

Apple has unveiled the thinnest, lightest Mac laptop yet which combines features from the iPhone and iPad with traditional series of Macbooks

Steve Jobs announced the new MacBook Air at a press conference last night which will incorporate FaceTime video conferencing and a suite of apps, which Apple is now bringing to all its Macs.

The new laptop has an 11.6-inch screen but weighs as little as 2.3 pounds. At its thinnest it is just 0.11 inches wide while the thickest part is still less than 0.7 inches.

It comes with a multi-touch trackpad which lets users control by pinching, rotating, swiping and double-tapping just like on the iPad or iPhone.

The MacBook Air comes with a trackpad that allows 'pinch to zoom' just like on iPads

The new MacBook Air uses flash storage rather than a hard drive like conventional computers meaning it can power up almost instantly from standby mode and store data twice as quickly as a standard hard drive.

However it has less processing power compared with Apple's other laptops.

Apple will bring a version of its mobile applications store to the Mac, aiming to replicate its success and spur development of new programs.

‘We asked ourselves what would happen if a MacBook and an iPad hooked up? Well, this is the result,’ Jobs said at a media event in Cupertino, California, calling the Air the ‘future of notebooks.’

The MacBook Air comes in two sizes, one with a screen that's 13.3 inches diagonally and another with a 11.6-inch screen. The larger one clocks in at 2.9 pounds and can be used for seven hours, thanks in part to a low-voltage processor from Intel that consumes less power than ones running in standard laptops.

The 11-inch model with a 64GB memory will cost £899 while the 13 inch version with 256 GB of storage comes in at £1,349.

‘They're basically merging the product lines; they're simplifying it,’ said Kaufman Bros analyst Shaw Wu. ‘They're taking the strengths out of what they've learned on the iPhone and iPad and bringing that technology over to the Mac side. It makes a lot of sense.’

While plenty of attention is lavished on the iPhone and iPad, the Mac has been critical to the company's success over past years. Apple sold $22 billion worth of Macs in 2010 comprising one-third of its revenue.

Many experts have wondered whether the iPad would dent sales of the Mac -- as it has done for low-end, Windows-based laptops known as netbooks.

Gartner analyst Mike McGuire said he expects the Air will try to bridge Apple's newer and older product lines.

‘It's that missing link between the tablet future and the existing notebook,’ he said.

Apple CEO Steve Jobs unveils the company's latest thinner MacBook Air using his customary 'one more thing' routine

The new MacBook Air is designed to reproduce the versatility of popular devices such as the iPhone and iPad, and will incorporate FaceTime video chats, which Apple is bringing to all its Macs

Jobs also showed off a new version of Mac operating software, which the company will release next summer. Nicknamed ‘Lion,’ it includes an improved ‘iLife’ multimedia suite and incorporates FaceTime video chat, which the company recently launched on the iPhone.

FaceTime will allow for video calls between iPhones, iPod touches and Macs. Over 19 million. It released a test version of FaceTime for the Mac yesterday.

The App Store for the Mac will go live within 90 days, and developers will be able to start submitting apps next month. They will get 70 percent of the revenue from sales.

The original App Store debuted in 2008 and helped spur sales of the iPhone by providing a wealth of fun, useful or merely diverting programs for sale, at the touch of a button.

It houses more than 250,000 apps and has generated over 7 billion downloads. In addition, more than 30,000 apps have been specifically made for the iPad.
Nearly 50 million people worldwide use a Mac.

source :dailymail

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