For Apple, 2012 has been a busy year when it comes to Mac products, with the introduction of new Retina MacBook Pro models, iMac, Mac Pro and Mac mini updates, not to mention the launch of Mountain Lion and iTunes 11.

Here, we round up all of 2012's new Mac hardware and software launches, and the reception they got from consumers and experts.

WWDC 2012

One of the biggest events of the year was the Worldwide Developers Conference (WWDC), which took place at the Moscone Centre in San Francisco in June.

During its keynote, Apple unveiled a 15in Retina MacBook Pro, updated its MacBook Air, and announced the launch of Mountain Lion and iOS 6. Following the keynote, Apple also snuck a 'new' badge onto its Mac Pro, but that was later removed. 

MacBook Air

Apple's 2012 MacBook Air update added USB 3.0, faster flash storage, and Intel Ivy Bridge processors to the slimline laptop. SEE: MacBook Air 2012 review

2012 was a successful year for Apple's ultrabook, with numerous reports that the MacBook Air has been dominating the market.

A DigiTimes report earlier this year suggested that the MacBook Air would take 39 per cent of the slim notebook market in 2012, but predicted that figure would drop to 28 per cent in 2013 as more ultrabooks, including Windows 8 models, gain popularity.  SEE: MacBook Air continues to dominate Ultrabook market, while competition awaits Windows 8

ALSO: Ultrabooks disappoint in 2012, MacBook Air is king

15in Retina MacBook Pro

At WWDC, Apple revealed its redesigned, thinner and higher resolution MacBook Pro, the 15in MacBook Pro with Retina display. The new model joined Apple's current 13in and 15in MacBooks in stores.

"With the MacBook Air, the team did something really bold. With the Air, they re-envisioned the notebook," said Apple’s senior vice president of Worldwide Marketing Phil Schiller. “So we've been asking the team, ‘What would make a next-generation MacBook Pro?’ added Schiller, as he unveiled the new design of the MacBook Pro during the keynote.

The 15in Retina MacBook Pro boasts a pixel density of 2,880 by 1,800, and was met by rave reviews, including ours, in which it earned Editors' Choice. SEE: Retina MacBook Pro can run three external monitors

The new model certainly proved popular, selling out within days of going on sale, but improving towards mid-July.

RELATED: Apple adds extra moisture sensors in Retina MacBook Pro

Some models of the new laptop suffered from a ghosting problem, forcing Apple to replace some faulty models with new ones. 

Mac Pro

While it didn't make it into the keynote, Apple also quietly updated the Mac Pro, nearly two years after its last update. SEE: Mac Pro (Mid 2012) review

But the initial excitement soon died down when consumers realised that the update was minor, with just a speed bump for the processors and increases in RAM.

Apple eventually removed the 'new' icon from beside the Mac Pro on its Online Apple Store following complaints about the insignificant update, and confirmed that a new Mac Pro is in the works, with a new model expected next year.

Apple CEO Tim Cook confirmed that "Apple is working on something really great" for 2013 in an email to a Facebook group called 'We Want a New Macpro', adding: "Our Pro customers like you are really important to us. Although we didn't have a chance to talk about a new Mac Pro at today's event, don't worry as we're working on something really great for later next year."

A keynote on 23 October saw Apple unveil new iMac models, updates to its Mac mini, and a 13in MacBook Pro with Retina display. 

iMac

One of the most exciting launches of 2012 was the redesigned iMac lineup, which saw Apple's all-in-one computer get a thinner body, improved display, performance boosts and the option to upgrade to the new Fusion Drive.

SEE: New iMac 2012 review round-up: what the critics say

AND OUR REVIEW: Apple iMac (late 2012)

The 21.5in model was first to begin shipping on the last day of November following delays, with the 27in model following in December. But those who didn't get their pre-orders in early found that they would have to wait until January to receive their new iMac.

SEE: Apple CEO: Expect delays for new thinner iMacs

The delay could have been down to problems with the manufacturing process that required high pressure welding and is connected to the new screen lamination process introduced in the new iMac line-up.

SEE: Apple cuts iPad mini's shipping delays, extends iMac's

ALSO: It's easy to upgrade RAM on new 27in iMac 2012

AND: Upgrading RAM on new 21.5in iMac 2012 practically impossible

13in MacBook Pro with Retina display

Also unveiled at the 23 October was the 13in version of Apple's new MacBook Pro with Retina display, which joined the earlier launched 15in version alongside Apple's non-Retina MacBook Pros.

The new MacBook Pro has a resolution of 2560x1600 pixels, making it the world's second highest resolution notebook, behind the 15in version of course.

For more information, check out our 13in Retina MacBook Pro review, in which, like it's bigger sibling, the laptop earned the Editors' Choice badge. 

Mac mini

The 2012 Mac mini introduced USB 3, added faster integrated graphics, and, for the first time, quad-core processors to the computer. Plus, starting at £499, it is the cheapest Mac available today.

SEE: 2012 Mac mini review

SEE: Lab tested: The Mac mini, maximised with Fusion Drive

Software: Mountain Lion and iTunes 11

In addition to all those hardware launches and updates, Apple also introduced new software in 2012, including Mac OS X 10.8 Mountain Lion and iTunes 11.

Mac OS X 10.8 Mountain Lion became available on the Mac App Store in July for £13.99. The new operating system introduced more than 200 new features to the Mac, many of them designed to closely integrate Mac OS X with Apple's iOS operating system.

Mountain Lion's highlights include Notification Centre, Reminders, Notes, Documents in the Cloud, VIP Inbox and Gatekeeper.

For more, check out our Mac OS X 10.8 Mountain Lion review.

Apple later released an update of Mountain Lion, which introduced Facebook integration ad Save As improvements.  

SEE: Microsoft Windows 8 versus OS X Mountain Lion

Finally, in late November, Apple launched iTunes 11, a redesigned version of its media player software.

The launch followed a month-long delay, during which Apple said it was taking "a little extra time to get it right."

However, the software was greeted by reports of broken links, graphics bugs and other issues, which led to a quick iTunes 11.0.1 update just weeks later.

SEE ALSO: How to downgrade iTunes 11 to iTunes 10 in Mac OS X

AND: More than 80% use iTunes 11, 21% hate it, many can't run it

So there you have it. And Apple's busy year didn't just include Mac-related news, of course. The company also launched the iPad mini, iPad 3 and iPad 4, the iPhone 5, new iPods, and more.