Apple unveils updated MacBook Pro

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iol scitech july 30 macbook pro AFP File photo: The 13 inch Macbook Pro with a Retina display is seen during Apple's special event at the California Theatre in San Jose.

San Francisco - As anticipated, Apple has boosted both the memory and processing power of its professional laptop range and has also cut the price of its one remaining non-Retina display model.

Now, all models with a Retina display come with double the memory and improved battery life. So for 13-inch models, that means 8 GB instead of 4 GB of RAM as standard and 16 GB in the 15-inch models.

All 13- or 15-inch notebooks also get upgraded to the latest iteration of Intel’s Haswell processor, so performance and battery life will also get an upward push.

However, Apple is keeping prices the same. That means that an entry-level 13-inch MacBook Pro with Retina Display will cost $1 299 (about R13 000) with a 2.6 GHz dual-core Intel Core i5 processor with Turbo Boost speeds up to 3.1 GHz, 8 GB of memory, 128 GB of flash storage, and Intel Iris graphics.

For an extra $700, consumers will be able to snap up a 15-inch MacBook Pro with Retina display boasting 16 GB of memory, 256 GB of flash storage, and Intel Iris Pro graphics.

If the spec bumps weren’t sufficiently appealing, Apple has also cut the price of the flagship 15-inch model — which comes with a 2.5 GHz quad-core Intel Core i7 processor with Turbo Boost speeds up to 3.7 GHz, 16 GB of memory, 512 GB of flash storage, and Intel Iris Pro and NVIDIA GeForce GT 750M graphics — to $2 499.

“People love their MacBook Pro because of the thin and light, aluminum unibody design, beautiful Retina display, all-day battery life and deep integration with OS X,” said Philip Schiller, Apple’s senior vice president of worldwide marketing. “The MacBook Pro with Retina display gets even better with faster processors, more memory, more affordable configurations and a free upgrade to OS X Yosemite this fall.”

On Tuesday, the company also confirmed that its last remaining notebook with an optical drive, the 13-inch MacBook Pro, which is slightly thicker than the Retina display models thanks to its CD/DVD combo drive and which has a lower-resolution screen, will remain in production.

Describing it as an attractive option for consumers considering making their initial jump from a PC to a Mac, the laptop has a 2.5 GHz quad-core Intel Core i5 processor with Turbo Boost speeds up to 3.1 GHz and a 500 GB spinning hard drive and while it hasn’t had its RAM upgraded (it’s stuck on 4 GB), it has had $100 cut from its price tag. It will now cost just $1 099. - AFP

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