Apple Shows Off New Laptops
Apple revamped its laptop line this morning, just in time to take advantage of what is usually the computer industry's busiest time of year.
The company's least expensive laptop, the white plastic MacBook, now costs $999 -- down from $1,099, the company announced at an event thrown at its headquarters in Cupertino, Calif.
On the higher end of its lineup, new MacBook Pros are priced at $1,999 and $2,499. That's the same price as they were before, but the new models come with a larger hard drive and more memory. Both are shipping today and should be available in stores starting tomorrow, said Apple chief executive Steve Jobs.
Echoing one of the iPhone's nifty features, users of some of the company's new laptops will be able to spread out their fingers on the laptops to zoom in on, say, a photograph.
After years of single-digit marketshare in the home computer market, Apple's marketshare is up to 17.6 percent. Jobs credited everything from Apple's marketing to the performance of Microsoft's Vista operating system for its increased popularity among consumers.
Jobs acknowledged that some would-be Mac buyers have resisted buying Apple's computers because of a fear of not being able to use software designed for Windows computers. But that's an issue of the past, thanks to the fact that newer, Intel-chip-using Macs can run Windows, Jobs said, even though "frankly this sends a shiver up my spine."
Apple is so proud of the production process for its new laptop that it even treated attendees to a mini-documentary about how the new laptops are created. Apple says it has come up with a new way to build lightweight but sturdy notebooks. "In many ways I think it's more beautiful internally than it is externally," said one executive in the video, according to one blogger.
A few techy notes: The new laptops won't feature an HDMI cable connection, by the way, and the company said it is going to continue to wait for Blu-ray to catch on in the market before it supports that video playback technology.
As a jokey reference to the ongoing concerns about Steve Jobs' health, the presentation featured a slide of Jobs blood pressure level at the beginning of a Q&A session: "110/70."
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