In addition to announcing the release of macOS Big Sur and formally revealing its first Mac-specific M1 chips, Apple today unveiled the first Mac computers that will use its new software and hardware: M1-powered versions of the 13-inch MacBook Air, 13-inch MacBook Pro, and Mac mini. Each of the machines will be using the M1 chip to deliver performance roughly three times the prior comparable Intel model, with AI performance that will be upwards of 11 times faster thanks to a new 16-core Neural Engine.
This is breaking news and will be updated shortly. Please refresh for additional details.
On the surface, the new machines look very similar to the Intel-based models they replace. However, they benefit from some new Apple chip-enabled features that will make them instantly appealing to new users, with the MacBook Air boasting longer battery life and dramatically improved graphics performance, and the Mac mini promising three times the prior CPU performance and six times previous GPU performance. All of the new machines support Thunderbolt 4 and USB 3, as well as Wi-Fi 6 for wireless connectivity.
The prior 13″ MacBook Air promised 11-12 hours of video playback or web browsing on a single charge, and used Intel’s integrated Iris Plus graphics. Now Apple is promising over 15 hours of run time, with as many as 18 hours of video playback. Yet the new model continues to sell for $999 — the same it previously cost for a 1.1GHz dual-core Intel Core i3, 256GB of storage, and 8GB of memory. Thanks to its larger internal battery, the MacBook Pro promises 17-20 hours of run time, depending on tasks, which Apple notes is the longest battery life ever in a Mac.
The Mac mini previously started at $799 for a 3.6GHz four-core Intel Core i3 with 256GB of storage and 8GB of memory, plus Intel’s integrated UHD Graphics 630 GPU. A $1,099 model stepped up to a 3.0GHz six-core Intel Core i5 with 512GB of storage and 8GB of memory. Apple has dropped the entry price to $699 for the Mac mini, and is holding the $1,299 entry price the same for the MacBook Pro. All of the machines will be available for preorder today, and available next week.
How startups are scaling communication:
The pandemic is making startups take a close look at ramping up their communication solutions. Learn how