The day after Apple's latest earnings call, I got an email from a reader that asked if the days of Apple leading the world in consumer electronics innovation has come to an end, and if the playing field is leveling out:
Q: What's up with Apple? It seems the stock is down, profits are great, and products are stagnant, only seeing revisions rather than new product categories. Have they gotten too big to be as nimble as they used to be?
Coincidentally, I was browsing Facebook earlier, and I came across a post where a friend was very unimpressed by Apple's announcement of the 128 GB iPad:
Maybe it's the jet lag, but the latest 'New Thing' is a 128GB iPad?
This is it?
Where's Apple innovation?
I dunno, it seems that people expect way more from Apple than any other company. They update their iOS products on a yearly cycle, and they even updated the iPad mid-cycle last time (which people got upset about too, because it was too soon. Wait, what?)
Do people forget that the original iPod was released in 2001, and then the iPhone 6 years later, and then the iPad another three years after that? The iPad isn't even three years old yet, and people are saying Apple has lost something. Big, game-changing products like this take time.
Speaking of marketing, watch every Apple commercial from 1977 to present day. There's about 485 commercials, which includes the famous Mac vs PC, the technicolored hipster iPod dance ads and, of course, the iconic 1984 Macintosh SuperBowl spot directed by Sir Ridley Scott. One of my favorites, the first iPhone ad 'Surprised' from 2007.
Finally, the all new redesigned iMac goes on sale this Friday, November 30th. Check out Apple's press release with spec and prices after the jump.
iMac Available on November 30
CUPERTINO, California―November 27, 2012―Apple® today announced the all-new iMac® will be available on Friday, November 30. Featuring a stunning design, brilliant display with reduced reflection, faster processors and an innovative new storage option called Fusion Drive, the new iMac is the most advanced desktop Apple has ever made. The 21.5-inch iMac will be available through the Apple Online Store (www.apple.com), Apple’s retail stores and select Apple Authorized Resellers. The 27-inch iMac will be available for order through the Apple Online Store and will begin shipping in December.
Read More | iMac product page
If Apple merchandise is on your holiday buying list this year, you're gonna wanna be sure to check out MacMall's 60-hour Black Friday sale, which features up to $350 off of Mac computers. The sale includes all Macs, so you can even get a nice discount on the new 13-inch MacBook Pro with Retina display for example. They've got other items as well, including discounts on the iPod touch, Apple TV, and major discounts on a bunch of consumer electronics like digital cameras, Blu-ray players, and more. Definitely a sale to check out to get the jump on your shopping--whether it's for someone else, or yourself. Here's the quick list:
- 13-inch MacBook Pro with Retina display
- 15-inch MacBook Pro with Retina display
- 13-inch MacBook Pro
- 15-inch MacBook Pro
- 11-inch MacBook Air
- 13-inch MacBook Air
- Mac mini
- Mac Pro
- iPod touch (5th generation)
- iPod touch (4th generation)
- Apple TV
MacMall has plenty more where that came from, so head on over and check out their full 60-hour Black Friday 2012 sale for all the deals.
Read More | MacMall 60-hour Black Friday sale
If you're hoping to pick up one of the super-thin new iMacs and plan on upgrading the RAM in it yourself, you'll want to make sure you pick up the 27-inch model. Why? Well, the 21.5-inch version doesn't have an easy-access memory panel to allow you to get to the RAM. Take a look:
The 21.5-inch iMac comes with 8GB of memory and can be configured online with 16GB. On the 27-inch iMac, 8GB of memory comes standard, and you can upgrade to 16GB or 32GB. Configure and buy your iMac at the Apple Online Store and it will arrive with the memory already installed. Or add more memory to the 27-inch model yourself by popping open the easy-to-access memory panel on the back.
So if you're in the market for the smaller machine, you'll want to make sure you buy the version that has all the RAM that you'll need.
Be sure to check out all the news from today's iPad mini event!
During this morning's iPad mini event, Apple unveiled the brand new, redesigned iMac. The new model is super-thin, just 5mm thin at the edges, constructed using something called "friction stir welding" to fuse together the aluminum pieces. The display is laminated to the glass, similar to what you find on iOS devices. You get the same screen sizes, with the iMac coming in at 21.5-inch 1080p and 27-inch 2,560 x 1,400 models. Apple also announced a new Apple Fusion drive option, which is basically a hybrid drive that OS X manages for you. The OS and apps live on the flash storage portion, and all your documents and other apps get loaded onto the HDD portion. As you use and launch them, things get moved to the faster SSD portion on the fly.
The 21.5-inch model will ship in November for $1,299 with a 2.7GHz Core i5 processor, 8 GB RAM, and with a 1TB hard drive. The 27-inch model starts at $1,799 for a 2.9GHz Core i5, and that one won't ship until December.
Read More | Apple iMac
If you picked up the new MacBook Pro with Retina display, or one of the refreshed MacBook Pro or MacBook Air Apple notebooks, it's always a good thing to consider AppleCare. You get an extended 3-year warranty, but the trick is that you should never buy AppleCare directly from Apple! Instead, buy it from Amazon, and you get it for up to 30% less. What's also nice is that when you resell your Mac, the AppleCare Protection Plan is transferable, and therefore you can charge more. Here's a list of the different AppleCare Protection Plans:
Apple Mobile Devices:
- AppleCare Protection Plan for iPad
- AppleCare Protection Plan for all versions of iPhone
- AppleCare Protection Plan for iPod touch/classic
- AppleCare Protection Plan for iPod nano and iPod shuffle
Apple Mac Computers:
- AppleCare Protection Plan - Mac Laptops 13-inches and below
- AppleCare Protection Plan - Mac Laptops 15-inches and above
- AppleCare Protection Plan - iMac
- AppleCare Protection Plan - Mac Pro
- AppleCare Protection Plan - Mac Mini
Apple is set to release it's next major operating system update, known os OS X Mountain Lion, later this month. In this edition of Ask Andru, Tracy writes in and asks if there is anything she should do to prepare her Mac computers for the Mountain Lion installation. I share some tips on what we can all do to ensure a smooth upgrade experience to Mac OS 10.8.
Question: I hear that Apple will be releasing a new version of OS X shortly. Is there anything I need to do in order to prepare for it to ensure that I can run it? Will it be expensive?
You're correct! Apple announced OS X 10.8 Mountain Lion just five months ago, and it will be available in under two weeks. Mountain Lion will sell exclusively on the Mac App Store for $19.99 (so, not expensive at all!) and will include some nice features, including AirPlay Mirroring from your Mac, tighter iCloud integration, Twitter and Facebook built-in at the system level, Reminders, Notes, Game Center, a new Messages app that will let you send and receive iMessages from the Mac, iPhone, iPod touch, and iPad. In total, there are over 200 new features that Apple is introducing in Mountain Lion.
Apple has relesed the official list of Mac computers that will be able to run its next operating system, OS X Mountain Lion. The good news is that pretty much anyone who bought a Mac in the past four years qualifies, but there are a few exceptions (we're looking at you, Mac mini.) Curious if your Mac fits the bill? Here's the list that breaks down whether you can run OS X 10.8 when Mountain Lion is released later this month:
- iMac (Mid 2007 or newer)
- MacBook (Late 2008 Aluminum, or Early 2009 or newer)
- MacBook Pro (Mid/Late 2007 or newer)
- MacBook Air (Late 2008 or newer)
- Mac mini (Early 2009 or newer)
- Mac Pro (Early 2008 or newer)
- Xserve (Early 2009)
So there you have it. If you're the owner of a Mac mini or Xserve, we feel your pain, but those machines were never the bulk of Apple Macintosh purchases. If you've got something older, your choices are to be stuck on Lion, or to get a new Mac. It's time.
Read More | Apple
Many expected Apple to release an updated iMac during the WWDC 2012 keynote, but the company decided to focus squarely on its Mac notebooks instead as it pertained to hardware. It's now been 427 days since the iMac last saw a refresh, and DigiTimes is reporting that we'll see the new models ship in October. Of course, no one but Apple and its manufacturing partners know all the details, but we've got our fingers crossed that we'll see a Retina display model on store shelves by the time Halloween rolls around. At the very least, expect Ivy Bridge architecture with Mountain Lion as the shipping OS.
Read More | DigiTimes