The MacBook Pro, described by Apple “The quintessential professional notebook,” has had a complete redesign. The all new 15-inch MacBook Pro is a new entry in the line up which also includes updated MacBook Pros and MacBook Airs. There are still MacBook Pros that sport the old design, but feature higher specs.
"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.
The professional Mac laptop is now thinner and lighter. While not wedge shaped like the Air, the new MacBook Pro is about the same thickness as the thickest part of the Air at 0.71in thin. In fact it is thinner than Phil Schiller’s finger when closed, about as thick as the base of the old MacBook Pro. The new laptop weighs in at 4.46 pounds, according to Apple. It’s the “Lightest pro notebook than they've ever made. Lighter than 13-inch Pro,” claimed Phil Schiller.
The all new MacBook Pro is the lightest MacBook Pro ever and nearly as thin as a MacBook Air, according to Apple.
The new MacBook Pro also offers: "A breakthrough in display engineering." Yes, it features a Retina display, news that got a big cheer from the audience.
“The pixels are so small, that from a normal working distance, you can't see the pixels,” claimed Schiller. The display is 15.4 inches across, but its pixel density is 2,880 x 1,800 he explained. That’s 4x the number of pixels: “The world's highest resolution notebook display.”
“The MacBook Pro with Retina display pushes the limits of performance and portability like no other notebook,” said Tim Cook, Apple’s CEO. “With a gorgeous Retina display, all flash architecture and a radically thin and light design, the new MacBook Pro is the most advanced Mac we have ever built.”
The new MacBook Pro Retina display is the world’s highest resolution notebook display with over 5 million pixels, 3 million more than an HD television, according to Apple. "At 220 pixels-per-inch, the Retina display’s pixel density is so high the human eye cannot distinguish individual pixels from a normal viewing distance, so text and graphics look incredibly sharp. The Retina display uses IPS technology for a 178-degree wide viewing angle, and has 75 percent less reflection and 29 percent higher contrast than the previous generation," claims the company.
The new thinner version of the MacBook Pro also features flash storage and quad-core processors. "Flash storage that is up to four times faster than traditional notebook hard drives enables the all new MacBook Pro to play four simultaneous streams of uncompressed 1080p HD video from internal storage", according to Apple.
Apple claims that the flash storage architecture also delivers improved reliability, instant-on responsiveness and 30 days of standby time.
The new look model also features the glass Multi-Touch trackpad,backlit keyboard, and boasts the "Best stereo speakers ever put into a desktop or notebook computer."
"The very best computer that we've ever built," according to Apple's Jony Ive.
It's also environmentally friendly with Energy Star 5.2, arsenic-free, mercury-free glas, BFR-free, PVC-free, and highly recyclable.
"Nobody turns over their entire line as quickly and completely as we do at Apple,” said Phil Schiller. "It's the most beautiful computer we have ever made."
The new MacBook Pro ships with Lion, but all the apps are updated to work with the high-res display. Apple says that new customers will be elegible for Mountain Lion when that ships in July. Read more about Mountain Lion here.
The 15-inch MacBook Pro with Retina display is available with a 2.3 GHz quad-core Intel Core i7 processor with Turbo Boost speeds up to 3.3 GHz, 8GB of memory and 256GB of flash storage starting at £1,799; and with a 2.6 GHz quad-core Intel Core i7 processor with Turbo Boost speeds up to 3.6 GHz, 8GB of memory and 512GB of flash storage starting at £2,299.
We think the new MacBook Pro is while welcome, a slightly confusing addition to the line up, we wonder how the company will differectiate it from other MacBook Pros, perhaps calling it "the new 15-inch MacBook Pro" as they did "the new iPad" or the MacBook Pro with Retina display. Either way, we don't think Apple's late CEO Steve Jobs would have let such confusing naming conventions out of the marketing department.
We're pubnlished our first thoughts about our review of the new MacBook Pro with Retina display here.