Category: Apple News

MacBook Pro Receives Minor Update, New Product Rumours Begin to Dominate, Dell and Blackberry Act Like Nothing Is Wrong, Are MacIntel’s Days Numbered?

13- and 15-inch MacBook Pro with Retina Display

13- and 15-inch MacBook Pro with Retina Display | Image courtesy of Apple

Weekly summary of stories from across the World of Apple during the week commencing 28th July, 2014. An attempt to summarise the more interesting stories from the week and lace them in observation and comment.

MacBook Pro Receives Minor Update

The MacBook Pro with Retina display has marked the way for a flurry of updates across Apple’s product line as we head into busy season. The update is relatively minor and will act as a stop gap before Intel’s Broadwell processor platform hits the market in mid-2015.

The MacBook Pro with Retina display saw updates to both its 13- and 15-inch display models which feature faster versions of Intel’s Haswell processors, all 13-inch models now come with 8GB of RAM standard while all 15-inch models now feature 16GB of RAM. Apple also cut the price of the high end 15-inch model by $100, which now starts at $2499 (£1,999).

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Week Summary: Apple Shows Off Latest Green Initiative, Yosemite Beta Goes Public, Earnings Hold Steady. R&D Spend Soars, Newest Ad Continues to Show New Colours

OS X Yosemite running on MAcBook Pro | Image courtesy of Apple

OS X Yosemite running on MacBook Pro | Image courtesy of Apple

Weekly summary of stories from across the World of Apple during the week commencing 21st July, 2014. An attempt to summarise the more interesting stories from the week and lace them in observation and comment.

Apple Shows Off Solar Array

Towards the end of the week Apple granted a bunch of journalists a tour of Apple’s latest green iniative, a huge solar array farm in Maiden, North Carolina. Capable of producing 20MW of energy, it allows Apple the peace of mind that it now outstrips its competitors with energy friendly schemes and for once has GreenPeace looking on and saying positive remarks—calling Apple the “gold standard”.

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Apple Holds Strong With Q313 Revenue of $35.3 Billion

Apple today announced financial results for its third fiscal quarter of 2013 which ran from January April 1, 2013 until June 30. Apple posted revenue of $35.3 billion and net quarterly profit of $6.9 billion, or $7.47 per diluted share. These results compare to revenue of $35 billion and net profit of $8.8 billion, or $9.32 per diluted share, in the year-ago quarter.

Gross margin was 36.9 percent compared to 42.8 percent in the year-ago quarter. International sales accounted for 57 percent of the quarter’s revenue.

Gross margin continues to be the number that many analysts watch closely as it continues to fall quarter to quarter. Primary reasons for this drop include the tighter margins on the iPad mini and heightened sales of cheaper iPhone models. To see this trend in action the key indicator is the changing average sales price of Apple’s top products. The iPhone’s ASP has dropped from $613 in the year-ago quarter to $581, the iPad has dropped from $515 to $436.

Apple reported the following number of shipments for its products during the quarter:

  • 31.2 million iPhones compared to 26 million in the year-ago-quarter
  • 14.6 million iPads compared to 17 million in the year-ago-quarter
  • 3.8 million Macs compared to 4 million in the year-ago quarter
  • 4.5 million iPods compared to 6.7 million in the year-ago quarter.

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Apple Announces Q213 Revenue of $43.6bn

AAPL Q213 Revenue Chart

Apple’s fiscal second quarter revenue with top end Apple estimate

Apple today announced financial results for its second fiscal quarter of 2013 which ran from January 1, 2013 until March 31. Apple posted revenue of $43.6 billion and net quarterly profit of $9.5 billion, or $10.09 per diluted share. These results compare to revenue of $39.2 billion and net profit of $11.6 billion, or $12.30 per diluted share, in the year-ago quarter. Gross margin was 37.5 percent compared to 47.4 percent in the year-ago quarter. International sales accounted for 66 percent of the quarter’s revenue.

Apple reported the following number of shipments for its products during the quarter:

  • 37.4 million iPhones compared to 35.1 million in the year-ago-quarter
  • 19.5 million iPads compared to 11.8 million in the year-ago-quarter
  • 3.95 million Macs compared to 4 million in the year-ago quarter
  • 5.63 million iPods compared to 7.7 million in the year-ago quarter.

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128GB iPad Release Contains a Message

iPad with Retina Display (4th gen)

iPad with Retina Display (4th gen) | Image courtesy of Apple

Today Apple did something somewhat out of the norm for the company, despite being rumoured ahead of time Apple released a new model of the iPad. But it didn’t change anything apart from the storage capacity, offering a whopping 128GB of storage for a meaty $799 (£639) for the WiFi model or $929 (£739) for the WiFi and Cellular model. This new iPad will be available to buy on February 5th.

There are many questions as to why Apple released this iPad this week or why in the supposed era of cloud storage that a 128GB iPad is even required. However it’s not that hard to speculate as to why Apple announced the 128GB iPad (apart from to try and out do Microsoft’s release of Office 2013) today.

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Cook Consolidates Senior Management Team

Scott Forstall introduces the ill fated iOS 6 Maps at WWDC 2012

Scott Forstall introduces the ill fated iOS 6 Maps at WWDC 2012

In a way we all liked to state how much of a mark Tim Cook was leaving upon Apple. Almost every move he made the writers and the bloggers would burst out into the open and exclaim about this was Tim leaving his legacy upon Apple, doing as Steve Jobs wanted and not leading in his shadow.

However with the largest shakeup in Apple leadership since Jobs took over from Gil Amelio in 1997 we can now really see Tim Cook leaving his mark on Apple. And under the guise of a closed stock market due to Hurricane Sandy and a distracted press a release was pushed out notifying of huge changes at the top (as was pointed out to me by a friend, when Katie Cotton is on the bottom of the PR you know it’s serious).

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Apple Unleashes Mountain Lion

Mountain Lion Notification Center on a MacBook Air

Mountain Lion Notification Center on a MacBook Air | Image courtesy of Apple

Today Apple has released OS X Mountain Lion onto the Mac App Store and into the hands of many eagerly awaiting customers. Priced at just $19.99 (£13.99) this marks Apple’s cheapest update and the first OS in a cycle in which Apple proclaims it will deliver an upgrade a year. This philosophy means that the upgrades will be small iteration updates, not the gigantic feature packed updates of the past.

In February when Mountain Lion was announced I wrote up the basic changes that extend far and wide but not necessarily so deep.

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MacBook Pro With Retina Display Debuts

MacBook Pro with Retina Display

MacBook Pro with Retina Display

Coming on the tail of minor updates to Apple’s other notebooks the company took to the stage at WWDC 2012 to unveil a new MacBook Pro with a Retina display. Known as MacBook Pro with Retina Display the new notebook features very powerful innards, long battery life and a super thin enclosure. The new MacBook Pro weighs just 2KGs and is just 18mm thick.

In a press release Tim Cook said, “The MacBook Pro with Retina display pushes the limits of performance and portability like no other notebook”. Adding, “With a gorgeous Retina display, all flash architecture and a radically thin and light design, the new MacBook Pro is the most advanced Mac we have ever built.”

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Apple Refreshes Notebooks, Desktops Lag Behind

MacBook Air (Mid 2012)

MacBook Air (Mid 2012)

In a demonstration of just how much more important notebooks are to Apple the company today took to the stage at WWDC to refresh all of their portable Macs. Apple gave the MacBook Pro and MacBook Air a minor speed bump as well as releasing a new model of MacBook Pro with a Retina display.

Apple quietly gave the Mac Pro a mild refresh including some newer Intel processors, although they’re still a couple of years old. Unlike the notebooks which gained USB 3.0 support the Mac Pro remains without Thunderbolt or USB 3.0. Neither the iMac nor Mac mini received an update today.

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Apple Blazes Into the Future With New iPad

The new iPad with Retina display

The new iPad with Retina display | Image courtesy of Apple

Apple today announced a new iPad finally putting an end to the chorus of iPad 3 rumours that have been circulating for many months. The new iPad, which is simply named iPad, is very much in line with the rumours. Also announced today, in line with expectation, was a new Apple TV.

Apple’s new Apple TV offers 1080p output and a new user interface which very much looks like Apple is positioning the device for more apps in the near future. Apple TV users can choose from over 15,000 movies and over 90,000 TV episodes on the iTunes Store, now available in 1080p. Apple TV also continues to offer content from Netflix’s streaming catalogue, live sports from MLB, NBA and NHL as well as Internet content from Vimeo, YouTube and Flickr.

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