I’ve been asked quite a few times today which Apple announcement I thought was the biggest—the blockbuster release that people would be talking about for days and weeks to come. That’s actually a very difficult question to answer, given the scope of the announcements.
If there was any event in recent memory that demonstrated the depth and scope of Apple’s products, it had to be this one. Every new product tied into the last and the next announcement in one way or another. Whether iOS or Mac, software or hardware, the connection was there.
The new iPads were clearly the products that everyone was waiting on throughout the event. I had some time after the event to play around with the new devices and gather some quick thoughts.
The iPad Air is everything you would expect from something with that name. Clearly an iPad in looks and functionality, but it’s also so light and seems less bulky than the previous generation iPad. It’s hard to imagine that Apple could make the iPad any thinner and lighter than it was, but they did. You can tell just from picking up the iPad Air that it’s different—it’s that obvious.
The iPad mini has been my most used iPad since it came out and I don’t see that changing. The most requested feature for the mini is here—a Retina display.
I never found the display on the iPad mini to be bad at all, and I used it all the time. However, there is no doubt that having the Retina display will make the reading experience1 much better. Of course, having the new A7 chip means the iPads are really powerful too, so no apps are going to be able to slow them down.
I was kind of surprised that neither iPad included the new TouchID fingerprint sensor. I must admit, I thought they would have it.
The new Mac Pro is just a beast of a machine. Much smaller than previous generation Mac Pros, but packing so much power. Everything about the Mac Pro, from the processors to the GPU and the I/O screams professional. I can’t wait to get this thing in my studio—it will be the first “desktop” Mac to actually sit on my desk in many years.
What’s amazing about the MacBook Pro is not that they made it faster or that it has faster graphics or that it has better battery life. What’s amazing is that they did all three.
For me, battery life is becoming one of the most important considerations for my portable computer. I’m tired of trying to find a plug wherever I go to top up the battery and I’d be willing to sacrifice a bit of power for better battery. Luckily, it doesn’t look like I’ll be making any sacrifices with the new MacBook Pro.
The last item on the list from the presentation is software. You may look at the software announcements and think they aren’t that significant, but this is huge.
Everything you need to operate a Mac or iOS device is free. Spreadsheet, photo, music, presentation, word processing, and movie-making software, all free.
I can’t wait to get my hands on all of these products to test them out, but I think Apple really made a statement today about doing what’s best for its customers. That’s what it’s all about.
I use my iPad mini mostly for reading emails and surfing the Web for work, so sharper text means a lot to me. ↩