Apple MacBook Air 13 with Thunderbolt  

Posted by Mohammad Talha in , , , ,

The 2011 MacBook Air addresses nearly every concern anyone could lob at its predecessor. It's still light on ports, the missing SD slot on the 11-inch model is a drag, and no, it isn't cheap, but this machine is fast, efficient, and not to be underestimated. It's a supermodel with a law degree from Columbia, a hunky motorcycle racer who looks good in leathers yet is also a concert pianist -- whatever your passion it won't disappoint, all while making a lot more room in your bag. More room for what? Well, your life, for starters.

When last we tested an Air, the 13-inch model with a 1.83GHz Core 2 Duo processor scored a 2,717 on the GeekBench benchmark. This new 13, configured with the default 1.7GHz Core i5 and paired with 4GB of DDR3 and a 128GB SSD, nearly doubled that: 5,373. No, that won't threaten the full-bore 15-inch MacBook Pro for sheer speed, but double the performance in nine months is a welcome improvement, living up to Apple's 2x promises here, and from what we've seen elsewhere the 11-inch lives up to its 2.5x promises as well.

The outside of this 2011 refresh of the MacBook Air is virtually indistinguishable from that which came before it. Yes, that means compromises. On the 13-inch model you'll still have to make do with but one USB port on the left and one on the right, but now that latter one is flanked by a Thunderbolt connector, Apple's implementation of Intel's Light Peak standard. This 10Gb/sec interconnect has become standard fare on all new machines coming out of Cupertino, a fact that should help to accelerate the so-far tardy uptake in support from accessory manufacturers.

The 11-inch model is likewise emblazoned, but sadly has still not been granted an SD reader, something restricted to the bigger 13. On the left you'll find a 3.5mm headphone jack, the MagSafe power connector and... nothing else. All other ports have been deemed unnecessary by Apple's designers and therefore relegated to myriad USB adapters for things like Ethernet -- though if you start relying on those you'll likely need to start packing a USB hub as well.


Like before, the omission of these ports leaves the Air free to pinch down to a delicious taper beneath the keyboard, thin enough to make for a decent cleaver when no proper blade can be found -- or when you just can't be bothered to find one. Even on the fat end it measures a mere .68-inches (17mm) thick. Or thin, rather. (engadget.com)

Apple's Thunderbolt 27inc Display  

Posted by Mohammad Talha in , , ,

Last, and probably least, in today’s deluge of new Apple products is the Thunderbolt Display, a new 2560 x 1440 LED monitor with Thunderbolt connectivity. The 27-inch screen connect to MacBooks, just like the existing Cinema Display, but the addition of the speedy Thunderbolt I/O, it almost turns into an iMac.

The monitor has three cables. One plugs into the power socket on the wall, one sends power to your MacBook’s MagSafe port, and the third will connect with mini DisplayPort/Thunderbolt port.

This last cable not only carries the video from the MacBook, it also works the other way, giving the Mac access to the display’s three USB ports, single FireWire 800 port, Ethernet port and another Thunderbolt port, along with connections to the screen’s HD webcam and speakers.

Thunderbolt's transfer rate is 10GBps per channel. isn't enough in one I/O port?

The single Thunderbolt port will let you daisy-chain other peripherals, just like you could with old FireWire gear. Thus, the monitor can stay on the desk, hooked up to an embarrassment of add-ons, and with the connection of a single cable your lightweight MacBook Air will be transformed into a multitalented workstation. The Thunderbolt Display can costs you around $1,000.

Apple Thunderbolt Display (27-inch) [Apple]

Apple iPad 3: Production Started  

Posted by Mohammad Talha in , ,

The company seems unlikely to lose its tablet industry lead. Over 40 percent of smartphones owners who use RIM, Windows or Android phones prefer Apple's iPad to tablets from their current smartphone operating system makers, a survey claims (as reported by Forbes).

With iPad 3 & its high resolution display, faster processor and potential inclusion of a new Thunderbolt port heading to the shelves, Apple's season of goodwill seems set to continue. The Trefis team writes: "We believe the iPad 3 will be a high performance iPad with some attractive features such as voice recognition service Siri, presently an important feature of iPhone 4S. The new iPad might also have high resolution screen as suggested by a few reports."

Apple supplier Pegatron suffered an explosion this weekend, in which 61 workers got hurt. The facility is understood to be being re-tooled for a new product refresh in 3-4 months, approximate to the anticipated schedule for release of the iPad 3. Pegatron Chief Financial Officer Charles Lin told Reuters: "The factory has not started operations yet. Part of the facility is still under pre-operation inspection and part is running trial production." This hints at a new production line scheduled to become operational just in time for the speculated upon March iPad refresh. Potentially.

Production of Apple's new tablets has been pushed forward in factories owned by Apple suppliers, ahead of Chinese New Year on January 22-28. Initial production is thought to be in the region of 1-1.5 million, according to various reports. Despite published statements to the contrary, it remains to be seen if the explosion at a plant thought to be producing iPad 3 casings will affect Apple's intended introduction schedule, or if it will delay launch of the device. (computerworld.com)

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