Category Archives for Apple

Apple Unveils New iPads, MacBooks

ht_new_macbook_13_kb_131022_16x9_992There were no big surprises at today’s Apple press event, as the tech giant showed off the latest models of its iPads and computers. How well will they stack up against the competition?

Several products got design upgrades, including the iPad, which also gets a new name—iPad Air. The iPad Air weighs just one pound, making it the lightest iPad yet. The newest iPad comes packing the same Apple A7 chip as the iPhone 5S, plus 64-bit desktop class architecture and more than a billion transistors. The price for all this is $499 for a 16GB Wi-Fi only model, and it ships November 1. The price of the iPad 2 drops to $399.

The iPad Mini finally gets Retina Display, a five megapixel camera and a new color range—black, white, silver and space gray. The price is $399 for the 16GB Wi-Fi model or $529 for the cell version. The original iPad Mini price drops to $299.

The 15” MacBook Pro gets faster processing and graphics plus eight hours of battery life. The price drops from $2,199 to $1,999. The 13” MacBook goes down to $1,299 from $1,499.

The latest version of Apple’s Mac operating system comes out today, and it’s free. Mavericks OS X is expected to improve the speed and battery life of your Mac and also includes new apps for Maps and iBooks.

Apple to Unveil New iPads and Macs October 22

On Tuesday, Apple sent out invitations to a media event happening on October 22. What new goodies does the tech giant have for us now?

Just last month, Apple introduced the latest versions of its iconic smartphone, the iPhone 5S and 5C. Now the company has formally invited the press to check out more new Apple products at a media event on October 22. The invitation did not mention which items will be featured, saying simply, “We still have a lot to cover,” against a background on multi-colored leaves.

The event will take place at 10 a.m. PDT at the Yerba Buena Center for the Arts Theater in San Francisco. So far there’s been no word about whether there will be a live stream, but it seems likely since there’s been one for most of the last few Apple events.

So what can we expect to see at this event? The most anticipated item is the fifth-generation iPad, which is rumored to be thinner and lighter with an upgraded camera. The next gen iPad is expected to run the Apple 64-bit A7 chip. Also rumored to be arriving is a second-gen iPad Mini with Retina Display and the same A7 chip.

Also expected is a new collection of Macs. Will there be any surprises? We hope so, since none of the above sounds especially exciting. What would really be a special treat from Apple? How about a lower-priced iPad Mini in time for the holidays? We probably won’t get our wish, but this could certainly enliven an otherwise dull press conference.

Get Free Downloads from Apple Store This Week

On Tuesday, Apple is releasing a new version of the Apple Store app, and will be offering some cool free stuff for users. Check the store all week for free deals on content from the App Store, iTunes Store and iBookstore.

As usual, Apple wants to sell you their products, and what better way to lure in customers than to offer them freebies? When the brand new Apple Store app for iOS devices like iPhone, iPod Touch and iPad is unveiled tomorrow, there will be a bunch of special deals waiting for users.

In addition to exposing its customers to content from iTunes, iBooks and Apps, Apple hopes to encourage buyers to purchase new iPhones from Apple retail stores.
Currently, 90% of customers buying their first iPhone purchase it through third-party sellers rather than one of Apple’s 250 retail locations. Since there are 10,000 of those retailers, including Best Buy, Radio Shack and the stores for carriers like AT&T, it’s pretty easy to see why.

Apple is seeking to kick up its direct iPhone sales with promotions like the current Back to School deal that offers eligible students and teachers a $50 App Store gift card with the purchase of a new iPhone. Even more tempting is Apple’s plan to begin offering instant trade-in credit for used devices at their stores, making it cheaper to upgrade to a newer iPhone.

When the iPhone 5S hits stores later this year, it will be facing the stiffest competition ever from the current crop of Android devices, but Apple seems to be ready for the fight. Meanwhile, check out the Apple Store for iOS on Tuesday for deals like the Color Zen puzzle game for free.

Apple Starts Trade-In Program for iPhones

Is your desk drawer cluttered up with old cellphones, the leftover devices from your last few upgrades? According to a report, Apple will be launching a program that allows buyers of new iPhones to trade in their old ones, so you won’t have to add one more to the collection.

Bloomberg reported on Thursday that Apple would soon begin offering an exchange program, teaming up with mobile-phone distributor Brightstar, the company already handling trade-ins for AT&T and T-Mobile. The program will let customers get a trade-in allowance on their old phone when they upgrade to a newer Apple iPhone.

One reason behind this move is the high demand for refurbished iPhones in emerging markets, where most buyers can’t afford a brand-new model. Also, Apple hopes to kick up sales of its latest models, including the new iPhone set to come out this summer.

Analyst Roger Entner told Bloomberg, “This will help them sell more phones, because it will lower the consumer’s out-of-pocket expense.”

Apple isn’t the first to offer an iPhone trade-in program. AT&T is now giving buyers of an iPhone 5 up to $200 for an iPhone 4 or 4S in good working condition. That means they can get an entry-level iPhone 5 with no money down.

Sure, you can always sell your old iPhone on Craigslist or eBay, but just taking it to the local Apple Store and trading it in on a new one is easier and more convenient for most customers.

With smartphone users in the U.S. upgrading more frequently, Apple is sure to be collecting quite a few old iPhones when that new model goes on sale in a few months.

Tim Cook Talks About the Future of Apple at D11 Conference

Can we expect any innovative new products from Apple in the near future? CEO Tim Cook’s comments yesterday at the D11: All Things Digital conference in Rancho Palos Verdes, CA, showed that the brand is still very much in the game.

When queried about competition from rival companies, which has grown stronger recently, Cook replied, “We’ve always had competent rivals. Microsoft, Dell, etc. But we’ve always suited up and fought. I don’t see that different today. We always focus on making the best products.”

Maybe so, but we haven’t seen anything new and revolutionary recently. Is Apple still the same company that produced the iPhone and the iPad?

“Yes, we’re still that company. Have some incredible plans we’ve been working on for a while. Incredible ideas. Same culture that brought you the iPhone, iPad, iPod, and some who brought you the Mac…still here.”

Unfortunately, Cook declined to go into detail about those “incredible ideas” except to say, “We’re still playing in TV with Apple TV.”

Cook admitted that Jony Ive was working on some new products. “Last fall we changed things up, to really ramp up our innovation. The key in the post-PC era is to have incredible hardware, software, and services, and to combine them so you can’t tell what’s what. The magic is at the intersection. So we amped it up. We recognized Jony’s contributions to the look and feel of Apple over the years, and that he could do it for software too.”

Apple will be rolling out a new look for iOS and OS X in a couple of weeks, and there have been rumors that Ive is changing the entire look of both.

It’s interesting that Cook acknowledges the “post-PC era,” just when tablet shipments are projected to overtake those of PCs very soon. Does this mean the Mac is a thing of the past for Apple?

Probably not right away, but computers are definitely a much smaller part of Apple’s pie than in past years. Look for more Apple news at the company’s developers’ conference in June.

Apple Drops Prices on Refurbished iPads and iPad Minis

If you’re looking for an Apple iPad at a bargain price, check out the brand’s online store for savings of about 15% over the cost of a brand-new model.

Shoppers who have been hankering for a an iPad but are tempted to settle for a lower-priced Android tablet should head over to the Apple store and compare the tags on refurbished models. Refurbs are a great deal for thrifty customers, because they have been restored to like-new condition, come with a warranty and are available at a substantially reduced price.

The refurbished 16GB Wi-Fi iPad Mini model that sells for $329 new and was previously $299 is now $279. The refurbished 32GB Wi-Fi model that sells for $429 new and was $389 is now $359, and the refurbished 64GB model selling for $529 new is marked down to $439 from $489.

The refurbished 16GB Wi-Fi + cellular iPad Mini model that sells for $459 new is now marked down from $429 to $389. The refurbished 32GB Wi-Fi + cellular model that’s $559 new and previously sold for $519 is now $469 and the refurbished 64GB Wi-Fi + cellular model selling for $659 new is marked down to $549 from $619.

The refurbished 16GB Wi-Fi model of the fourth-generation iPad that sells for $499 new is now marked down from $449 to $419. The refurbished 32GB Wi-Fi model selling for $599 new is now $499, down from $549 and the refurbished 64GB Wi-Fi model that sells for $699 new is marked down to $579 from $649.

The refurbished 16GB Wi-Fi + cellular model of the fourth-generation iPad that sells for $629 new is now marked down to $529 from $579. The refurbished 32GB Wi-Fi + cellular model that sells for $729 new is now $609, down from $679 and the refurbished 64GB Wi-Fi + cellular model selling for $829 new is marked down to $689 from $779.

There are no 128GB fourth-gen iPads available in Apple’s refurb store yet. The next generation of the iPad is expected later this year.