Apple unveils new 2018 iPad Pro, MacBook Air, Mac Mini, and Apple Pencil
Today, Apple announced updated MacBook Air, iPad Pro, Mac Mini, and Apple Pencil models at its event in Brooklyn, New York. Both the iPad Pro and the MacBook Air received considerable design changes, including the addition of Touch ID to the latest MacBook Air model and an elimination of the home button from the new 11" and 12.9" iPad Pros. This follows last month's iPhone event.
The 2018 iPad Pro swaps Touch ID for Face ID, the face-scanning security technology first introduced with the iPhone X. Both the 11" and 12.9" 2018 iPad Pro models feature an all-screen design with Liquid Retina displays, rounded corners, flat edges, and a 5.9mm thickness, making them the thinnest iPads to date.
The new iPad Pro features Apple's A12X Bionic chip with four performance cores and four efficiency cores, as well as a new performance controller that Apple says allows all eight cores to be used at once. This is joined by Apple's own seven core GPU, which the company claims offers "console-quality graphics." As rumored, Apple has replaced the Lightning connector with USB-C.
Apple is offering the new 2018 iPad Pro tablets in space gray and silver with 64GB, 256GB, 512GB, and 1TB configurations; both WiFi-only and WiFi+cellular options are available. Prices start at $799 USD for the 11" model and $999 USD for the 12.9" model.
Full details on the new iPads are available here.
The two new iPad Pro tablets are joined by an updated Apple Pencil, the stylus that originally launched as an iPad Pro exclusive. The new Pencil model charges wirelessly and attaches magnetically to the iPad Pro's edge. This eliminates the highly criticized Lightning connector found on the bottom of the original Apple Pencil. The updated model likewise packs a touch sensor that can detect taps, which Apple describes as a new way to interact with apps.
Joining the new iPad Pro models is the fabled MacBook Air update, which brings Touch ID to the Apple laptop, as well as a 13" Retina display, faster SSD options, a Force Touch trackpad, an Apple T2 Security Chip, Thunderbolt 3, and wide stereo audio. Other features include a FaceTime HD camera, the ability to display 48% more color than the previous Air generation, an 8th-generation Intel Core i5 processor and Intel UHD Graphics, up to 13 hours of battery life, and a new "wedge-shaped" design.
Apple is offering the 2018 MacBook Air starting at $1,199 USD. More information on the laptop can be found here.
Joining the MacBook Air is a new Mac Mini with quad-core and six-core processor options, up to 64GB of RAM, the Apple T2 Security Chip, Thunderbolt 3 ports, and what Apple says is five times faster performance than the previous model. The updated model boasts 10Gb Ethernet, all-flash storage in capacities up to 2TB, HEVC video transcoding up to 30 times faster than before, and an enclosure that's the same size as the previous model.
Apple says it used entirely recycled aluminum for the enclosure and increased its use of post-consumer recycled plastic for parts. The company claims these two things combined reduce the Mac Mini's carbon footprint by almost 50%.
The 2018 Mac Mini is available from Apple now starting at $799 USD. More information on the model can be found here.
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