Estimated prices on 13-inch Retina MacBook Pros: Starts around U$1,699

Alongside the new mini/iPads, Mac Minis, and iMacs, Apple will reveal a 13-inch MacBook Pro with Retina Display on Oct. 23. We have now received pricing information on the base model and the “best” model. We believe the entry model 13-inch Retina MacBook Pro will cost roughly $1,699 at launch, based on wholesale prices we received, while the higher spec model will cost $200 to $300 more.

The base model Retina MacBook Pro retails for $2,199 in the United States, so the 13-inch varieties would create a more inexpensive option for those who also prefer a smaller device. We expect these to be available shortly after launch, but we can probably expect some supply constraints as we saw with the 15-inch Retina MacBook Pro. We also expect initial supply constraints on some of the new iMacs.

It sounds like the 13-inch Retina MacBook Pro will have a 2,560-by-1,600-pixel display (the same as a 30-inch Cinema Display), with the effective area being the same as the 1,280-by-800 screens as the current MacBook Pros when used in pixel-doubled Retina mode. We do not yet have other specs on the Retina Pro configuration, but we will update as that information comes in.

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Why build a 13-inch Retina MacBook Pro and not a Retina MacBook Air?

We were initially skeptical about reports of a 13-inch Retina MacBook Pro, but we are obviously believers now that we have received word from very reliable sources that they are due in just over a week. Why were we skeptical?

Apple already has an incredible form factor in the 13-inch MacBook Air. So, why not simply give it a Retina Display? Read more

13-inch MacBook Pro with Retina display confirmed for Apple event

Alongside the smaller iPad, Apple will debut a 13-inch MacBook Pro with Retina Display, according to a consistently reliable source at a high-profile U.S. retailer.

This new 13-inch MacBook Pro with a Retina Display is said to pick up the thinner and lighter enclosure of the 15-inch MacBook Pro with Retina display that was released in June.

The new 13-inch MacBook Pro will be sold in two configurations, with differing processors and storage, and will be available for purchase soon after introduction.

Like with the 15-inch MacBook Pro lines, the 13-inch MacBook Pro with Retina Display will be sold (at a higher price) in addition to the current non-Retina display model. That computer was updated with faster processors and USB 3.0 in June.

The current 15-inch MacBook Pro with Retina Display is codenamed D2, and its smaller sibling is in fact, as predicted this morning, dubbed D1 internally.

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iFixit: MacBook Pro’s amazing Retina Display is made by LG Philips

[Image credit: iFixit]

We covered iFixit’s Retina Display teardown this morning, but the report left out one very important detail: Who makes the display? There had been some discussion by DisplayMate’s Raymond Soneira on whether Sharp’s IGZO display technology was used:

An IGZO Retina Display? Traditional high PPI displays (with amorphous Silicon) are inefficient with both brightness and power. As a result, the new iPad 3 with a Retina Display needs a 70 percent larger battery than the non-Retina Display iPad 2, but the MacBook Pro with Retina Display has only a 23 percent larger battery with the same 7 hour running time as the non-Retina Display MacBook Pro. How can this be? You may recall that IGZO technology has been making headlines for months, first rumored to be the technology used in the Retina Display for the new iPad 3. IGZO is significantly more efficient than amorphous Silicon. It wasn’t ready in time for the new iPad 3, but Sharp announced that production of IGZO LCDs with up to 300 PPI started in March of 2012… Just in time for the MacBook Pro… These facts lead me to speculate that the MacBook Pro is using a Sharp IGZO Retina Display…

Apple, Sharp, and Foxconn are rumored to be working together on something bigger as well.

Nope… Read more

New MacBook Pro’s Retina display reviewed and benchmarked

After posting initial benchmark data yesterday for the new Retina MacBook Pro’s SSD and USB 3.0, AnandTech published a longer analysis today about the notebook’s display. The report first took a closer look at the new resolution preferences for Retina MBP users and described the advantages of the different scaling options displayed in the gallery above:

Retina Display MBP owners now get a slider under OS X’s Display Preferences that allow you to specify desktop resolutions other than 1440 x 900. At 1440 x 900 you don’t get any increase in usable desktop resolution compared to a standard 15-inch MacBook Pro, but everything is ridiculously crisp… Even at the non-integer scaled 1680 x 1050 setting, the Retina Display looks a lot better than last year’s high-res panel. It looks like Apple actually renders the screen at twice the selected resolution before scaling it to fit the 2880 x 1800 panel (in other words, at 1920 x 1200 Apple is rendering everything at 3840 x 2400 (!) before scaling… Everything just looks better.

As illustrated in the images above showing benchmark data, the review found greatly improved viewing angles, black levels, and contrast when compared to the previous generation high-res MacBook Pro model. AnandTech then looked at Apple’s claims that the new MacBook Pro display reduces glare by 75 percent from previous generations:

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Apps & updates: Diet Coda goes live, Draw Something & Opera Mini go Retina, more

A few newsworthy apps and updates already landed in the App Store today including the Diet Coda development platform that we told you about a few days ago, and some Retina graphics updates for popular apps such as Draw Something and Opera Mini. Another notable app in the news today is Blizzard’s recently released Diablo III. The company announced on its site that it sold more than 4.7 million copies on launch day and more than 6.5 million in a week.

We will update the list throughout the day as more notable apps and updates are released:

Draw Something: OMGPOP’s massively popular Pictionary-style drawing game was updated today with “Bright, high resolution graphics” for users of the new third-generation iPad’s Retina display. Other improvements included in the update are a new password recovery system, a new loading screen, and the usual bug fixes. The free version of the app received the same update.

Diet Coda: We told you a couple days ago that developer Panic planned to release an iPad version of its Coda developer platform, and the app has already landed on at least the New Zealand store today. It is listed as $13.99, but it should go for $9.99 USD when it hits the U.S. App Store later today. That is a 50 percent discount as a launch special good until Thursday.

Some of the app’s features include remote editing of documents, FTP and SFTP File Management, Syntax Highlighting, and a “Revolutionary Super-Loupe” that allows for easy positioning of the cursor in iOS. It also has an “AirPreview” feature that allows you to use “your iPad as a dedicated preview window for Coda 2 on the Mac.”

Opera Mini Web Browser: Opera’s Mini web browser app for iPhone and iPad has always been a great third-party browser option on iOS, and it gets even better with a new UI today for the third-generation iPad’s Retina display, as well as a Data Usage option in the main menu, and various bug fixes and stability improvements.

Mint Personal Finance app: Intuit has updated its universal Mint.com Personal Finance iOS app today adding “two of your most requested features.” On both iPhone and iPad, you can now create and edit budgets as well as spilt transactions into multiple categories.

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Report: Retina MacBook displays to cost Apple more, but will it affect the customer?

9to5Mac first revealed that Apple is readying Retina displays for its computer lineup (MacBook Pros, MacBook Airs, and iMacs) that were previously only available to iOS devices, but new reports claim those high-resolution displays within the supply channel will debut on Apple’s notebooks at an increased cost.

According to DisplaySearch Senior Analyst Richard Shim (via CNET), the panels are becoming a “premium feature” that will cost the Cupertino, Calif.-based Company. The analyst further explained that including a 2,800-by-1,800-pixel display in the 15.4-inch MacBook pro would cost about $160. Apple currently spends $68 on its current models. Meanwhile, he said adding a 2,560-by-1,600-pixel display in the 13.3-inch model would cost $134, versus the current $69 expense.

According to CNET:

“What’s unclear is if consumers will end up paying more for the improvements. When Apple made the jump to Retina Displays in its iOS devices, the cost of the device stayed the same. The scale was a bit smaller though. For instance, according to a bill of materials from IHS iSuppli, the price of the third-generation iPad’s display was $87 versus the iPad 2’s $57, just a $30 difference.

As it stands, Apple already offers one such screen resolution upgrade on the 15-inch MacBook Pro, but customers need to pay for it. For $100 more, users can go from the 1440 by 900 pixel display to one that’s 1,680 by 1,050 pixels, or a 36 percent increase in the number of pixels.”

Whether or not the super-resolution displays cost more, it is highly unlikely that Apple will raise prices. As the publication noted above, adding Retina displays to the iPhone 4 and third-generation iPad, for example, did not increase Apple’s asking price.

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Intel VP: Ivy Bridge processor is built for ‘Retina display’ computers

At the Intel Developer Forum that took place yesterday, Intel’s Vice President and General Manager of the PC Client Group Kirk Skaugen revealed (14:30 mark) that Intel’s upcoming Ivy Bridge Processor is built for Retina display computers, “if OEMs choose to use it.”

“Retina display” is a marketing term coined by Apple to describe a screen where one cannot discern pixels at an average usage distance with 20/20 vision. It is curious that Intel’s VP used an Apple term to describe high-density computer displays for the broader market.

Apple is set to use Intel’s Ivy Bridge processor in its next line Macs, making it an opportune time to introduce its Retina display technology into the Mac line. The Ivy Bridge processor, without help from discrete graphics processors, can power 2560-by-1600 displays (as Skaugen said), which is four times the current resolution found in the 13-inch MacBook Pro. That would look pretty good on 13-inch displays of Apple’s Pro/Air.

Apple’s bigger, high-end notebooks have typically had help from discrete graphics processors. To make bigger displays “Retina,” Apple would likely need to add more GPU processing power.

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One Retina Display icon has many more pixels than a whole original Macintosh screen

Gizmodo shows how far we, and the pixels we love, have come since 1984. On the left, you see the 512-by-342-display on the original Mac (and a few subsequent Macs). On the right, you have a typical 512-by-512-iPad Retina icon that Apple now requires developers to submit with their apps.

Note (Thanks commenters): The actual Retina icons are 114px on iPhone and 144px on iPad and XXpx on Macs (Apple is thinking ahead here).

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Reports claim the new iPad will actually be called the ‘iPad HD’

According to both CNET and VentureBeat, Apple’s new iPad won’t be officially called “iPad 3,” but rather “iPad HD.” The “HD” suffix is a nod to the new iPad biggest upgrade: the high-definition Retina Display. The Verge reported last year that the new iPad would be called the “iPad HD,” so it’s worth taking a look at their surrounding iPad HD rumors from last year.

We’re not entirely buying the new name.

The Verge’s report called for some new professional software for the iPad HD, and also said the device would be marketed as a new high-end iPad, and the iPad 2 would continue to sell. However, our sources have been saying that most iPad 2 models will be discontinued, and the new iPad  will keep the iPad 2 price points. The new iPad will also include a faster chip and improved cameras, and Apple’s media event is this Wednesday.

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