The Tech News Blog

July 29, 2014

Retina MacBook Pros Get Speed Bump

Apple MacBook Pro

Need a new computer before heading back to school this fall? Apple just updated its MacBook Pro with Retina display lineup with faster processors and more memory ahead of the release of its next-gen operating system, OS X 10.10 Yosemite.

The base 13-inch MacBook Pro with Retina display is keeping its $1,299 price tag but getting a speedier 2.6GHz dual-core Intel Core i5 chip and 8GB of memory. Prior to the upgrade, the base model featured a 2.4GHz Intel Core i5 CPU and 4GB RAM.

Meanwhile, the top-of-the-line 15-inch MacBook Pro with Retina display, whose price was cut from $2,599 to $2,499, now boasts a faster quad-core Intel Core i7 processor up to 2.5GHz and 16GB of memory, up from 8GB.

If you're on a budget, Apple also knocked $100 off the starting price of the non-Retina 13-inch MacBook Pro, which it said is a "very popular system with Windows switchers," bringing it down to $1,099.

November 12, 2013

Apple’s Retina iPad Mini Now on Sale

Hands On With the iPad Mini With Retina Display

Without much fanfare, Apple on Tuesday started taking orders for the new iPad mini with Retina display.

The device is now available on, with the 16GB and 32GB Wi-Fi model shipping in 1-3 business days and all other models shipping in 5-10 days, in both colors.

Apple unveiled its new iPad mini and iPad Air at a press event last month. The iPad Air went on sale on Nov. 1, but Apple would only say that the Retina iPad mini would land later in November.

Pricing for the newest small form factor iPad starts at $399 for the 16GB Wi-Fi version and goes up to $829 for the 128GB cellular plus Wi-Fi version. All four major U.S. wireless carriers now offer the iPad, with T-Mobile serving up 200MB of free monthly data to entice customers to the "un-carrier."

The original iPad mini is still on sale; the 16GB Wi-Fi version is $299 while the Wi-Fi plus cellular model is $429.

October 22, 2013

Apple Unveils New iPad Air, Retina iPad Mini

Apple Unveils New iPad Air, Retina iPad Mini

Apple today unveiled a new tablet lineup, including the newly named 9.7-inch iPad Air, as well as an iPad mini with Retina display.

The updated iPad mini with Retina will arrive in late November, starting at $399 for the 16GB with Wi-Fi and $529 for one with cellular connectivity. It will come in white and silver or space gray and black, and Apple promised 10 hours of battery life.

The original iPad mini will remain on sale, but gets a price drop from $329 to $299 for the non-Retina version.

Meanwhile, according to Apple's Phil Schiller, the new iPad Air is 20 percent thinner than the previous iPad, from 9.4mm to 7.5mm. The bezel is also 43 percent thinner than the previous version, "making it more comfortable to hold," he said.

"To make an iPad this thin took a huge amount of work over years," Schiller said. "The team has just been remarkable in finding every tenth and hundredth of a millimeter from the bezel to the multi-touch service to display and battery."

The previous iPad weighed 1.4 pounds, but the iPad Air will come in at just 1 pound.

October 2, 2013

A Retina iPad Mini Might Be in Short Supply

Apple iPad mini

Hoping for an iPad mini with Retina display this holiday season? Not so fast. According to Reuters, Apple's supply chain is only now prepping for the new gadgets, meaning a Retina iPad mini will be in short supply.

Though Apple is rumored to be unveiling its next-gen iPads later this month, Reuters says a Retina iPad mini probably won't be available "in large volumes" until 2014. That doesn't mean Cupertino won't unveil a Retina iPad mini this year, but that it might be hard to get your hands on one for several months.

Apple did not immediately respond to request for comment.

This is not the first time we've heard about problems with a smaller Retina display. This summer, a Taiwanese news report sparked rumors that the 7.9-inch device would not hit shelves until early next year. Another August report suggested that Apple initially avoided a Retina display in order to preserve battery life and thinness, but would forge ahead with a display from Samsung nonetheless.

July 13, 2013

Rumor: Retina iPad Mini Pushed Back to 2014

Apple iPad Mini

Hoping to get your hands on an iPad mini with a Retina display this year? Don't hold your breath.

According to a report from Taiwan's Economic Daily News, Apple's 7.9-inch tablet may not be outfitted with a higher-resolution Retina display until early next year. Apple had originally planned to launch a Retina iPad mini this fall, but shortages of the updated display panels forced Cupertino to push back the release until early 2014, the report notes.

The existing iPad mini includes a 1,024-by-768 display, the same as the iPad 2. When the second-generation iPad mini makes its debut, it may come in both Retina and non-Retina versions, according to the report. There's no word as to how much the Retina-equipped model might cost.

Apple first unveiled the iPad mini last October, so one might think that if the company was following an annual release schedule we'd see a follow-up this year. But, as we know, Apple doesn't exactly follow a set schedule.

February 22, 2013

Leaked iPad Mini Images Hint at Retina Display

Leaked iPad Mini Images Hint at Retina Display

After only four months on the market, the iPad mini is a certified hit with consumers. But perhaps the only knock against the device has been related to its display, which falls slightly behind similarly sized tablets such as the Nexus 7 and the Amazon Kindle Fire HD. However, if new leaked images are any clue, Apple may be about to remedy that issue in the device's next update.

In a post on China's WeiPhone, which was picked up by mobile device site Mobilespie, one forum member uploaded a set of photos showing off what looks to be an updated back casing for the iPad mini. Sporting an odd, possibly pre-production blue Apple logo, the case has all the design elements associated with the current iPad mini, however, upon closer inspection of the images, the back casing appears to be slightly thicker than the current version.

A thicker housing would support the notion, rumored almost since the launch of the first iPad mini, that Apple would have to slightly increase the device's thickness in order to support a higher-resolution Retina display. Of course, considering the high volume of bootleg gadgets produced in China, any images originating from the region are just as likely to be counterfeit knockoffs. Nevertheless, after perusing the various close-up angles of the new back casing, the authentic appearance of the hardware is difficult to dismiss.

February 13, 2013

MacBook Pro With Retina Display Gets Price Drop, Processor Boost

Apple MacBook Pro 15-inch (Retina Display)

Apple this morning quietly dropped the price on its lineup of MacBook Pros with Retina display, and gave them a speed boost.

The 13-inch Retina MacBook Pro now starts at $1,499 rather than $1,699, while the 15-inch starts at $2,199.

The laptops also got a processor update. The $1,699 version of the 13-inch MacBook Pro with Retina display now boasts a 2.6-GHz dual-core Intel Core i5 and 256GB of flash, whereas its cheaper counterpart still runs a 2.5-GHz chip and has 128GB of flash.

The $2,199 15-inch MacBook Pro with Retina display now features a faster 2.4-GHz, quad-core processor instead of 2.3 GHz, as well as 8GB of memory. At $2,799, the most expensive MacBook Pro with Retina includes a 2.7-GHz chip (up from 2.6 GHz) and 16GB of memory.

Apple today also announced that the 13-inch MacBook Air with 256GB of flash has a new lower price of $1,399.

All of the updated Macs are now on sale, Apple said.

November 27, 2012

Firefox 18 Beta Promises Speed Boost, Retina Support

Firefox logo

Mozilla today released a beta version of Firefox 18 that promises speed improvements, support for Retina display screens, and more.

The updated browser now supports Apple's Retina display for Mac users "to make Firefox even sharper when watching movies, playing games and browsing the Web," Mozilla said in a blog post.

Apple's Retina display debuted on the iPhone 4S, but also now extends to the iPhone 5 , the third- and fourth-generation iPads, and the Retina-enhanced, 13- and 15-inch MacBook Pros.

Firefox 18 Beta will also allow users to disable insecure content on encrypted websites "to maintain the privacy of your communication with the website," Mozilla said. With Firefox 14, released in July, Mozilla started automatically encrypting searches conducted via Google's search engine in the browser's location bar, search box, or the right-click menu.

For those with touch-supported devices, Firefox 18 beta joins Internet Explorer 10 in adding support for W3C touch events. That means that websites that respond to touch, tracking your movements as you glide your finger across the screen, for example, will work in Firefox 18.

November 25, 2012

Retina Display on the iPad Mini: What It Would Take

Apple iPad Mini

If you think that Apple's following a predictable pattern with its iPad releases, you might be correct… so long as you've taken the iPad Mini off the list.

Here's what we mean: The launch of the first-generation iPad Mini didn't include a "Retina Display" among the tablet's key features, leading some to speculate that Apple's sure to wow fans (and frustrate first-gen purchasers) with a souped-up display in the iPad Mini's second iteration.

However, AnandTech's Anand Lal Shimpi and Vivek Gowri recently posted an analysis that pours a little water on these hopes. In the article, they argue that Apple has to make one of three fundamental changes to the iPad Mini in order for one's dreams of a Retina Display to become a reality: Double the current horizontal and vertical resolution of the iPad Mini, pick a new resolution that allows Apple to achieve a Retina Display while still maintaining the iPad Mini's 4:3 aspect ratio, or pick a brand-new resolution and aspect ratio entirely.

While the first option might seem the most likely scenario given Apple's tendency to just quadruple the pixel count of its tablets in order to achieve the characteristics of its Retina Display, the reality – according to Shimpi and Gowri – is that doing so on the iPad Mini would require Apple to significantly bump up the device's battery and processor. That calls for a beefier, heavier, and costlier tablet, "which would make it distinctly un-mini," they write.

October 23, 2012

13-Inch Apple MacBook Pros Compared: Is Retina Display Worth It?

MacBook Pro with Retina Display (13")

We expected a lot of things from Apple's event today, but we didn't expect everything. There may have been a lot of stuff announced, but what really got us salivating was the new MacBook Pro 13-inch with Retina display.

Like the 15-inch Retina-equipped model announced during the summer, the new Apple MacBook Pro 13-inch (Retina display) does more than just ramp up the resolution on the previous Apple MacBook Pro 13-inch (Mid 2012) —instead, the whole system gets an overhaul, and the result is a leaner, more refined MacBook Pro.

For those looking into buying an Apple laptop, the decision just got a lot harder. Apple's marketing materials will gush all over this new laptop, and it is hands down the laptop to get, if you need what it offers. There is, however, the downside of price and that's where most buyers will make their decision. Before we talk price, however, let's take a look at what each laptop offers, and what sets one apart from the other.