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By 23 October 2013 | Categories: news

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Apple has lifted the lid on its new MacBook Pro notebooks at an event held in San Francisco yesterday. Amongst other upgrades, the latest generation MacBook Pros boasts Intel’s fourth generation (Haswell) Core processors, upgraded graphics processors, longer battery life, quicker flash storage as well as support for the latest Wi-Fi standard (802.11ac).

The new 13" MacBook Pro with Retina display runs Apple’s latest desktop operating system (OS), Mac OS X Mavericks out of the box. It is powered by a fourth generation dual-core Intel Core i5 processors clocked at 2.6 GHz with Turbo Boost speeds of up to 3.1 GHz.

This notebook boasts Intel’s new integrated Iris graphics processor that Apple says delivers up to 90% faster performance when compared with the previous generation MacBook Pro with Retina display. Users are able to configure the 13" model with a snappier dual-core Intel Core i7 processor running up to 2.8 GHz with Turbo Boost speeds up to 3.3 GHz. The base model packs 4 GB of RAM, 128 GB worth of flash storage and starts at a recommended retail price of $1 299 (around R12 700) Stateside. No local release info is available yet from the Core Group.  

Cupertino’s new 15" MacBook Pro with Retina display sports Intel’s quad-core Core i7 Haswell processor running up to 2.3 GHz with Turbo Boost speeds up to 3.5 GHz. This variant packs Intel’s Iris Pro graphics or buyers can opt for a dedicated Nvidia GeForce GT 750M discrete graphics card with 2GB of RAM for an enhanced gaming experience.

The base model features 8 GB of RAM, 256 GB flash storage, and goes for an RRP of $1 999 (about R19 500) in the US. The South African release info is not available yet. Users can upgrade this notebook with a quad-core Intel Core i7 processor clocked at 2.6 GHz per core, up to 16 GB of RAM and flash storage of up to 1 TB (1000 GB).

Apple, operating system, Mac OS X Mavericks, App Store, notebook, Apple MacBook Pro, Intel, Intel Core i range, Haswell, Cupertino

Additional features

The new MacBook Pro with Retina display now sports PCIe-based flash storage with up to 60% snappier read speeds compared to the previous generation. In addition, support for the latest Wi-Fi standard, namely 802.11ac will deliver wireless performance that is up to three times quicker when the notebooks are connected to an 802.11ac basestation. Dual Thunderbolt 2 ports deliver up to 20 Gbps of bandwidth to each external device, whilst an HDMI port offers quick connectivity to HDTVs or projectors.

Thanks to Intel’s new Haswell CPUs plus numerous OS enhancements both iterations of the MacBook Pro offer improved battery life. For the 13" MacBook Pro with Retina display, Apple claims a battery life of up to nine hours that is two hours more than the previous generation. The  15" MacBook Pro with Retina display delivers up to eight hours of battery life, which is one hour more than the previous generation, according to Cupertino.

Mavericks surfs onto the App Store

Apple also revealed that Mac OS X Mavericks, the 10th major release of its desktop OS, is available for download from the Mac App Store for free. This latest iteration of the OS boasts more than 200 new features including Apple Maps integration, and a more streamlined Calendar app that estimates travel time between appointments. Users also get interactive notifications that allows them to reply to a message or respond to a FaceTime call, without leaving the application that they were using before getting the notification.

The Cupertino based tech outfit stated that any Mac computer that is able to run OS X Mountain Lion can also operate on OS X Mavericks. Users are able to upgrade to Mavericks for free directly from OS X Snow Leopard, Lion or Mountain Lion, by going to the Mac App Store and clicking on the OS X Mavericks icon on the features apps page. Be warned that the OS is a hefty 5.29 GB download though.

Apple, operating system, Mac OS X Mavericks, App Store, notebook, Apple MacBook Pro, Intel, Intel Core i range, Haswell, Cupertino

In related news, Apple is not the only tech firm to show off its new wares, as Nokia unveiled its first tablet - the Lumia 2520 - along with two new phablets in the Lumia 1520 and 1320.

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