Apple MacBook Air Highlights Macworld intros; laptop only .76 inches tall
Apple’s Macworld Expo took place today with Apple CEO Steve Jobs rolling out a number of new features, products, etc. Read on for the quick overview of today’s developments, including MacBook Air, Time Capsule, and new features to Apple TV, iPod Touch, and iPhone.
MacBook Air: The big announcement was a new 13.3-inch laptop that measures only.16-.76 inches tall (yes, it fits in an envelope), has 2 GB memory standard, an 80 GB hard disk (a 64 GB SSD is an option) and is priced at $1,799. Processing is 1.6 GHz standard with a 1.8 GHz option and an Intel Core 2 Duo processor. Intel even shrunk the processor 60%–as thick as a nickel and wide as a dime, according to Paul Otellini, Intel CEO. It has 802.11n and Bluetooth support along with one USB 2.0 port, Micro-DVI, and audio out. It does not have an optical drive but a Superdrive accessory is available for $99.
Time Capsule: A new version of Airport Extreme, it has a 500 GB or 1 TB hard drive to allow for wireless backup of Apple computers (as well as wireless broadband access).
iPod Touch: iPod Touch is now, for a $20 upgrade, the equivalent of the iPhone without the phone. The upgrade delivers mail, stocks, notes, weather and maps applications.
iPhone: Can’t forget the iPhone, right? New features include maps with locations (using 23 million WiFi hotspots to locate; NOT GPS so no telling how truly accurate it will be); chapter navigation in iTunes (plus multiple language track and subtitling support); and Webclips, the ability to, for example, add one-touch access to the New York Times Technology section to the home screen.
iTunes: Launching a movie service with more than 1,000 films by the end of February with titles available 30 days after DVD release. Can be watched on Macs, PCs, iPods or iPhones with 30-day window to watch and, once started, 24 hours to finish. In addition, according to Macworld, you can transfer to another device in the middle of playing.
Apple TV Take 2: First, a price drop to $229 (from $299). In addition, HD and 5.1 support (so much for the HD-DVD vs. Blu-ray battle as once again physical formats are vulnerable although we’ll see how the quality compares). $4.99 for HD rentals, more than 100 titles in HD available today. TV episodes are $1.99. New Apple TV is available via a software upgrade for existing systems.