15-inch MacBook Pro gets latest Intel chips, better battery life, and a lower price

Apple's MacBook Pro line has now gotten an entirely expected upgrade to current-generation Intel CPUs, just in time for the holiday shopping season. In our hands-on initial testing, these new 13-inch and 15-inch models look and feel just like the previous generation, but the promise of longer battery life, somewhat improved performance, faster Wi-Fi, and lower starting prices is enough to make this a significant overall update...

Read the full story here... Source: CNET

Apple sued over defective MacBook Pro Retina displays

A lawsuit has been filed in federal court in California alleging that Apple is misleading consumers by not advertising that there are two different types of displays used in its MacBook Pros with Retina displays. The issue stems from widespread reports that MacBook Pros with Retina displays that use display panels from LG suffer from ghosting issues. MacBook Pros that use Retina displays from Samsung reportedly are not affected by the same issues.

ArsTechnica reports that the class action lawsuit says that because the two makes of the Retina displays "exhibit different levels of performance and quality" Apple is wrongly marketing the MacBook Pro with Retina display as one product when instead it should be marketed as two different products -- the difference being which display, LG or Samsung, is used in the laptop.

[Source: TUAW]

Twelve South Releases BookBook Case for 15" Retina MacBook Pro

South Carolina-based accessory maker Twelve South has released a new version of its BookBook case, this time for the 15" MacBook Pro with Retina Display. The case matches those available for the iPad and iPhone, as well as existing ones for the 11" and 13" MacBook Air models. The 13" MacBook Pro with Retina fits into the existing case designed for the 13" MacBook Air.

Designed exclusively for MacBook Air and MacBook Pro with Retina display, BookBook is a totally unique case for the thinnest of MacBooks. Weighing as little as 13.5 ounces with an ultra-thin profile, this handmade, genuine leather case offers heavy duty protection. Two hardback covers, reinforced corners and a cushioned spine offer solid impact protection. The inside of the case is lined with a velvety soft, chocolate brown, padded interior for added protection.

BookBook cases for the 11" and 13" MacBook Air models and the 13" and 15" MacBook Pro with Retina Display are available for $80 from Twelve South's website.

[Source: MacRumors]

Apple releases MacBook Pro firmware update to fix battery issues

Apple has released the MacBook Pro SMC Firmware Update 1.7. The update addresses a very specific issue owners of the MacBook Pro (15- and 17-inch models, Early 2011) and MacBook Pro (15- and 17-inch models, Mid 2010) were having. Though rare, the issue would cause the laptops to unexpectedly shut down or stop functioning after more than 1,000 battery charge cycles.

The firmware update can be downloaded through Software Update on the select models, or users can download it directly here. Last month Apple released the MacBook Pro SMC Firmware Update 1.6, which addressed asimilar issue on other models.

[Source: TUAW]

The Apple Store begins offering Retina 15″ MacBook Pro refurbs starting at $1869

This evening, Apple began offering refurbished Retina MacBook Pros at the online Apple Store at significant 15% discounts, yielding savings of over $500 on high end models (below). 15-inch Retina MacBooks normally retail at $2200 but we’ve seen them as low as $2,000 (which is also the EDU discount price).

Apple refurbished products are packaged and look like new and come with the same one year of AppleCare. See all of the best prices on Apple Products on our Apple product pages.

[Source: 9to5Mac]

MacBook Air, MacBook Pro refreshes expected June 2013 with same designs, new processors

Digitimes expects Apple to unveil refreshed MacBook Air and MacBook Pro models in June 2013. The report claims that Apple has already issued requests to its supply chain partners to prepare to build the revised notebooks. Digitimes frames the news as concern for Ultrabook vendors.

Digitimes also says that the new MacBook Air models will include new processors, but the computers will likely retain the current industrial design. The current MacBook Air design was introduced with the late 2010 model. Apple last updated the MacBook Airs in June 2012 with faster processors, new RAM and storage options, USB 3.0, and a FaceTime HD camera.

Separately, the report also believes that current MacBook Air models could see price drops ahead of the product refresh, but this would be unlike Apple’s typical Mac upgrade strategy. Apple’s common Mac update strategy is to succeed a current Mac model with the refreshed version without providing official price drops ahead of these refreshes.

[Source: 9to5Mac - Click here to ready the full story]

Earth friendly MacBook Pro Retina 13 Sleeves Now Available at ColcaSac

Contrary to most Apple cases and covers, the sleeves made by ColcaSac are smartly designed to provide sturdy protection for the MacBook while promoting nature conservation. All products are handmade using the most durable organic materials such as hemp canvas, woven bamboo, jute burlap and recycled polyester fleece.

Each MacBook sleeve from ColcaSac is a tight fit and features a dual layer of hemp, bamboo or jute burlap exterior and a super soft fleece interior. The outer layer makes it comfortable and secure to hold the MacBook, as the inner layer makes a great cushion to protect the device from scratches and bumps. Both layers are highly breathable, while the fleece lining is thermal resistant to weather conditions. It also features a functional front pocket which makes it possible to carry along the power adapter securely.

ColcaSac's MacBook sleeves come in five stylish designs: Uintah, Hanakapiai, Zagora, Chevron and Juan Valdez.

13-inch MacBook Pro with Retina display confirmed for Apple event

Alongside the smaller iPad, Apple will debut a 13-inch MacBook Pro with Retina Display, according to a consistently reliable source at a high-profile U.S. retailer.

This new 13-inch MacBook Pro with a Retina Display is said to pick up the thinner and lighter enclosure of the 15-inch MacBook Pro with Retina display that was released in June.

The new 13-inch MacBook Pro will be sold in two configurations, with differing processors and storage, and will be available for purchase soon after introduction.

Like with the 15-inch MacBook Pro lines, the 13-inch MacBook Pro with Retina Display will be sold (at a higher price) in addition to the current non-Retina display model. That computer was updated with faster processers and USB 3.0 in June.

The current 15-inch MacBook Pro with Retina Display is codenamed D2, and its smaller sibling is in fact, as predicted this morning, dubbed D1 internally.

[Source: 9to5Mac]

OWC offers 480GB SSD upgrade for Retina MacBook Pro, requires screwdriver and careful math

Order up a Retina MacBook Pro and you'll likely be confronted with a gravelly message about how the SSD is "built into the computer" and not user-upgradeable. As it turns out, that's not quite true -- so long as you're prepared to ignore a whole bunch of other warnings written inside the chassis itself, iFixit has shown how to remove the factory drive and now OWC has a new SSD to replace it with. The only downside is the cost: at $580, OWC's 480GB Mercury Aura Pro is actually more expensive than Apple's official 512GB upgrade. In an effort to sweeten the deal, OWC is offering those who buy before September 30th a compact USB 3.0 enclosure to make use of the freed-up drive. Alternatively, you may want to wait for prices to drop or for OWC to offer an even bigger capacity with better cost / benefits.

[Source: Engadget]

Retina MacBook Pro Shipping Speeds Up

Just a little over a week since shipping estimates for new Retina MacBook Pro orders through Apple's online store saw their first improvement from 3-4 weeks to 2-3 weeks, timeframes have again been reduced. As with the previous improvement, the change has first appeared in Apple's Asia-Pacific markets, which have seen shipping estimates drop to 1-2 weeks.

Shipping estimates in Apple's other main distribution regions of the Americas and Europe/Middle East/Africa are holding steady at 2-3 weeks for the time being, but they will almost certainly see similar drops to the 1-2 week timeframe in the very near future.

Shipping estimates for the Retina MacBook Pro peaked at 3-4 weeks roughly 36 hours after the models were unveiled at last month's Worldwide Developers Conference, with estimates remaining at that level until last week's drop to 2-3 weeks. Availability at other online and brick-and-mortar retailers is also improving, in many cases beating Apple's online store estimates for stock models, but the company's online store is the primary source for customized orders. 

Update: Estimates in Apple's online stores in the Americas have also moved to 1-2 weeks.

Note: The speed of delivery remains at 2-3 weeks in the UK & others parts of Europe.

[Source: MacRumors]

Retina Macbook Pro Shipping Faster!

Since the launch of the Macbook Pro with retina display, early customers have been experiencing long waits for their deliveries. According to MacRumors

"For the first time since its launch just over one month ago, Apple's Retina MacBook Pro has begun to see improvements in shipping estimates for new orders placed through the company's online store. The improvement has appeared first in Apple's Asia-Pacific markets, which have seen estimates move from 3-4 weeks to 2-3 weeks." 

13-inch Retina MacBook Pro Incoming

When the 15-inch retina display MacBook Pro was revealed, we all looked on in amazement. This new super high res beast from Apple was amazing. What followed was an influx of rumours and questions about when the rest of the range (including the iMac) would get the retina love.

It seems that we could be seeing a 13-inch Retina MacBook Pro as early as October 2012, according to KGI Securities analyst Ming-Chi Kuo who recently revised his prediction from August to October.

In a recent article from DigiTimes, it seems that many big players are denying the rumours.

Rumors are that several notebook brand vendors have delayed or decreased their shipments with Apple also being named as having postponed mass shipments of a planned 13-inch MacBook Pro with Retina display; however, sources from upstream suppliers of Apple have refuted the rumors saying their supply status is stable.

Of course, Apple is as tight-lipped as ever. Personally, I think that the 13-inch Retina will definitely happen during 2012, as it is a natural progression. It is also very likely that these super high resolution displays will also appear in the MacBook Air at some stage and maybe even the iMac during 2013.