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Apple introduced some rather large upgrades to its 15-inch MacBook Pro line this morning, and debuted a slightly cheaper version of their 27-inch 5k Retina iMac.
The MacBook Pro update sees the addition of the Force Touch trackpad, which was introduced earlier this year in the 12-inch MacBook and the 13-inch MacBook Pro. The Force Touch trackpad can be clicked on anywhere on its surface, and can detect the pressure of the users’ touch (a deep press will bring up different options than a light touch, for example.) In addition to the Force Touch trackpad, Apple has upgraded to a new type of flash storage, which runs up to 2.5x faster than in previous models. The new storage is also more power efficient, which buys the new MacBook Pro 9 hours of battery life (up from 8 hours in the previous version.) Even with all these upgrades, the starting price of the new MacBook Pro remains unchanged – $1999.
Apple is also offering a beefed-up version of their new MacBook Pro. For $2499, a faster processor (quad-core 2.5GHz as opposed to 2.2GHz) is included, as well as an improved graphics card. The new AMD Radeon R9 M370X is said to offer an 80-percent increase in graphics performance over its cheaper counterpart.
With the addition of the new MacBook Pro, Apple also introduced a slightly cheaper version of their all-in-one 27-inch 5k Retina iMac. The base machine debuts for $1999, a $500 price drop from when it was introduced seven months ago. The price drop also comes with a bit of a performance drop, however. With a 3.3GHz Core i5 processor (down from 3.5GHz) and a conventional 1TB hard drive as opposed to the faster “fusion” drive, the new machine may operate just a bit slower than the original. An AMD Radeon R9 M290 graphics card with 2GB RAM may make up for the decreased performance, and an additional Thunderbolt 2.0 port doesn’t hurt either.
The higher-end version sees a $200 price drop as well. $2,299 will get you a 3.5GHz Core i5 processor, the improved graphics card, and 1TB of fusion storage.
Both the new MacBook Pro and the new iMac are available now at Apple’s online store.