Savestate: How ’bout them updates?

posted in: Editorials & Features | 0

apple-logo.pngRe: Apple’s October 2014 Keynote

The iPad Air 2 is thinner, sports an improved display, includes TouchID and comes in Gold. Now I just need for someone to confirm that it has at least 2GB of RAM.

I’m very intrigued by the A8X and what kind of GPU configuration Apple squeezed in there because this isn’t like last year’s A7 configuration at all. The A7 SoC was simply given room to stretch its legs in the iPad Air chassis; Apple weren’t trying to push graphical prowess with the iPad Air. It looks like the iPad Air 2 will be different.

I’m disappointed that they didn’t give consumers the 32GB as the base model though. Why so greedy, Apple? At least they’re consistent with the iPhone 6 in this regard.

The iPad Mini 2 did not receive as much love as the Air 2 though. All Apple did was include TouchID and include the Gold option. It still features the A7. On the plus side, if you don’t care about TouchID, the iPad Mini with Retina Display is now $100 cheaper. I wonder if they included more memory.

I bet the new iMac w/ Retina 5K looks stunning. I just can’t justify purchasing one which is why it’s a little tough to get excited for it.

OS X Yosemite is out today and I can download it but I’m waiting to see if Apple will offer an update for those of us who were using the betas.

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New iPads, Macbooks & Mac Pros. Oh my!

posted in: Technology News | 0

apple-logo.pngThe autumn leaves have revealed themselves which means it’s time for another round of hardware updates to the Apple lineup.

There was a lot of speculation as to what Apple had in store for this event. And just like with every event, most of the rumors were spot on while a handful omissions were disappointing.

Macbook Pro w/ Retina Display Haswell update

The first generation Macbook Pro w/ Retina Display was a solid effort for the 15″ but the 13″ was lagging behind due to Ivy Bridge’s relatively weak integrated GPU solution. The Haswell update and its Iris Pro offerings seems to be the missing pieces that will help Apple properly bring their high density Macbook Pro into reality.

Mac Pro Update

At $1999, it’s pricier than what I would normally pay for a desktop but then again I am not the target audience for such a machine. I don’t mind admiring exquisite design but I love tinkering and upgrading too much to give that up — especially a machine that costs $1999 or more.

iPad Air

I don’t quite understand why Apple decided to add the word “Air” to their latest 9.7″ iPad. They didn’t introduce a direct replacement to the thicker iPad 4 and they are phasing it out as well. So why did they? Why did they feel the need to the emphasize the the thin and lightness of it with the moniker?

I’m also confused by their continued use of the A7 in the full sized iPad. Historically, Apple took their latest SoC added additional GPU cores, bumped clock speed and slapped on the X suffix. They didn’t do that this time around. I doubt the A7 is running at the same clock speed but what about the number of GPU cores?

iPad Mini w/ Retina Display

The mystery behind the A7 continued when Apple revealed the iPad Mini w/ Retina display. The iPad Mini has the same number of pixels so the A7 is required but will it be running at the exact same speed? Apple is promising the same 10 hour battery life for both the 9.7″ and 7.9″ tablets, so either Apple engineers are wizards or there are some compromises that we’re not aware of.

Perhaps both are running at the exact same speeds and by doing so, Apple was able to get the weight of the 9.7″ down to 1 lb. I’m very curious how it all pans out.

The lack of Touch ID and gold color options for both iPads were disappointing. I don’t necessarily need the Touch ID for my iPad because I just leave that unlocked at home. It makes sense on a phone but not as important for me on the tablet. The lack of gold option though? I don’t understand why they wouldn’t offer that. Too gaudy to have a solid gold back? Or perhaps all of the above was held back due to supply and manufacturing concerns? After all, the gold iPhone 5s was (is?) a bit tough to acquire.

OS X Mavericks Is Free

So this is it. The end of charging for the operating systems from Apple. We’ve all come to expect free iOS updates from Apple, so this is just an extension of their philosophy of giving users software to keep them in the ecosystem.

I didn’t mind paying $20 for a yearly update but I certainly don’t mind free.

So there was an Apple event today

posted in: Technology News | 0

apple-logo.pngToday’s Apple event was chalk full of new products and even contained a couple of genuine surprises.

Let’s start from the top.

13″ Macbook Pro w/ Retina Display

The rumors were right, Apple were planning to announce a 13″ version of their expensive (yet pretty) “next generation” Macbook in the autumn. Starting $1699 may seem reasonable in comparison to the $2199 15″ version but it’s still very pricey when you consider the underlying hardware.

The lack of a quad-core CPU is tolerable but the lack of a dedicated GPU solution is baffling to me. Intel’s HD4000 integrated graphics aren’t going to fare so well at the native resolution of 2560 x 1600. And what’s with the paltry 128GB SSD? Couldn’t they just throw in a 256GB drive for that price?

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