This is a special edition of the TechSummit Rewind, focusing on Apple’s October 2016 event recap.
Minecraft coming to Apple TV
Apple CEO Tim Cook revealed plans that Minecraft is coming to the Apple TV. According to Cook, you’ll be able to build worlds straight from the Apple TV.
TV app puts content in one place
Apple has launched its own TV guide-esque experience in the new TV app. The app brings together content from services like HBO and ESPN, along with iTunes content.
The app is free on iOS and Apple TV, and works with Siri so you can use voice commands to find shows and control feedback. It also integrates with the single sign-on feature introduced earlier this year for tvOS, and will be available in the U.S. before the end of the year.
The main attraction here is the 2016 MacBook Pro, which has been redesigned with an all-metal design with an OLED touch strip above the keyboard dubbed the Touch Bar. (Yes, the escape key lives on in software). It comes in silver and space gray (with no glowing Apple logo), with the 13-inch Pro weighing three pounds and measuring in at 14.9mm of thickness.
Apple claims the Bar as a Retina display that responds to both taps and gestures. To the right is a Touch ID fingerprint authentication module that’s protected with a sapphire glass cover.
The Force Touch trackpad is twice the size of the previous one, and there’s an improved keyboard with the butterfly mechanism.
The new display is 67 percent brighter, with a 67 percent better contrast ratio, and displays 25 percent more colors. However, according to Apple, it consumes less power than before.
In terms of specs, the 15-inch MacBook Pro has a quad-core Intel Core i7 processor, with an ATI Radeon Pro graphics card with 4GB of dedicated RAM. You can get up to a 2TB SSD that’s up to 50 percent faster than its predecessor and the 15-inch model comes with 16GB of RAM. According to the company, the 15-incher’s speakers are louder and have twice as much dynamic range.
The 13-inch model has either Core i5 or Core i7 processors, Intel Iris Pro graphics, and 8GB of RAM.
Both machines have four Thunderbolt 3 USB Type-C ports, all of which can be used for charging. They also have a 3.5mm headphone jack, but no other ports. According to Apple, these USB-C ports can replace power, Thunderbolt, USB, DisplayPort, HDMI, and VGA ports.
Speaking of power, battery life is believed to be “up to 10 hours” for both versions, which is slightly longer than the old models.
A 13-inch MacBook Pro is also being introduced without a touch strip that’s designed to take the MacBook Air’s place. The MBP is over two millimeters thinner than the MacBook Air and is 13 percent lighter. It has two Thunderbolt/USB-C ports and a lower-spec Core i5 processor.
The 13-inch non Touch Bar MacBook Pro is shipping today starting at $1,499 with a 2.0GHz dual-core Intel Core i5 processor (Turbo Boost up to 3.1GHz), 8GB of RAM, and a 256GB SSD.
The 13-inch Touch Bar MacBook Pro will ship in two-four weeks starting at $1,799 for a 2.9GHz dual-core Intel Core i5 processor (Turbo Boost up to 3.3GHz), 8GB of RAM, and a 256GB SSD.
The 15-inch MacBook Pro will ship in two-three weeks starting at $2,399 with a 2.6GHz quad-core Intel Core i7 processor (Turbo Boost up to 3.5GHz), 16GB of RAM, and a 256GB SSD.
Lastly, Apple has killed the 13-inch MacBook Pro from 2012, which was the last Mac product to have a built-in optical disc drive. New models are no longer on sale, but some refurbished units are still available.
LG designs 5K displays for new MacBook Pro
Apple has partnered with LG to design its new 27-inch 5K UltraFine Display for the new MacBook Pro. Two of the $1,299.95 displays can be driven on the MacBook Pro.
There’s a 5180×2880 resolution with built-in cameras, microphones, speakers, and three USB-C ports.
A Thunderbolt 3 cable included with the display can deliver power, data, and video to your MacBook, and it all comes in a frame mounted on an adjustable stand.
The UltraFine display will be available in December from Apple.