Apple discontinued the iPad Air 2 today and replaced it with a new 9.7-Inch iPad with A9 CPU. This is the new entry level tablet from Apple.
As far as specs go this one have a brighter display compared to the original, but it lacks most of the Pro features like true-tone display, smart connector, Apple Pencil and Smart Keyboard support. It also looks like the anti-reflective coating had to go. Probably to keep the prices down.
2 048 x 1 536 Resolution
8MP iSight (back) / 1.2MP FaceTime (front)
Lightning and 3.5mm minijack
This is considered a low-cost iPad and pricing at this time of writing starts at $329 for 32GB and 429 for 128GB. You can get your hands on a device in the end of march.
iPad Mini 4 Storage Bump
If you decide to get an iPad mini you will get more storage for your money now. Apple have decided to discontinue the 32GB model and replace it with a whooping 128GB instead for the same price of $399. If you want a cell version the price increases to $599 at the time this article was written.
Sources on the Internet are saying that new iPads are on their way.
The rumors suggest that there are at least two different models Apple are planning on releasing this month.
KGI Securities analyst Ming-Chi Kuo who have leaked a lot of correct Apple rumors in the past are suggesting that we will see a new 10.5-inch iPad Pro model with the Touch ID built into the display and a nearly edge free design. This is supposed to be the new flagship iPad model from Apple.
We will also see updates to the 12.9 Inch and the 9.7 Inch model.
The current low supply of iPads in the market also suggest Apple probably are doing some updates.
The new iPad identifiers for 2017 are looking like this:
If you want to know what I think about this computer you are welcome to check out my MacBook Pro 2016 Review. With that said I have recently seen some graphical interface issues in macOS. When I am able to get those graphical issues on a screenshot it is obviously some software-related issue going on here.
It doesn’t happen all the time, but I haven’t been able to figure out what is causing this issue. It mostly happens in the drop shadow underneath windows like that copy bar pictured above. It is also occasionally apparent when I bring up the spotlight search bar or use quick looking at files.
The current OS build I am running is macOS Sierra 10.12.3. I assume this will be fixed in software updates in the future. I dont notice any other issues when this happens, its only cosmetic for now.
What if you wanted to move away from the Mac ecosystem and go back to Windows? The applications you used in macOS, do they have good alternatives on Windows?
Lets find out!
Most of the apps I suggest costs a bit of money, but I haven’t got paid to recommend these.
Time Machine – Bvckup 2 – A lightweight and fast backup app for Windows. It keeps a folder or hard drive in sync and thats it. It doesn’t make it bootable or anything like that. But that is how I like it. I just want backup of my data. An OS I can always reinstall myself.
Apple Mail – Mailbird – You could use Outlook or Thunderbird, but I think Microsofts e-mail client are too bloated with too many features. Mailbird is simple and lightweight e-mail client for Windows with good support for multiple e-mail accounts.
Apple Photos – I use Adobe Lightroom but that is because I use a DSLR that shoots RAW files and Apple Photos doesn’t handle that in a good way. To organize my photos from a mobile device on Windows I would try Google Photos.
Safari – Google Chrome – Chrome is the first thing I install on a new Windows system to browse the Internet.
If you are heavily invested in iCloud stuff you could always use Apples web applications on icloud.com. You have access to contacts, calendar, pages, numbers, keynote etc. If you have a lot of documents and media stored there the website can be used in a transition process over to Windows.
This list is by far not complete, the suggestions above are the ones I think are worth talking about. Leave a comment below if you have something to add.
In the recent shareholder meeting with Apple Tim Cook reassured investors that pro users are very important to Apple. He also said “Don’t think something we’ve done or something that we’re doing that isn’t visible yet is a signal that our priorities are elsewhere”
Many feel that questioning Apples priorities considering the lack of updates mainly to their desktop lineup of computers are needed. Especially considering the Mac Mini and the Mac Pro who have had many years without updates.
If people are afraid that Apple is going to abandon desktop devices they should re-assess that fear. Tim also answered this to a question if they where going to merge the macOS and iOS ecosystem:
“Expect us to do more and more where people will view it as a laptop replacement, but not a Mac replacement – the Mac does so much more,” he said. “To merge these worlds, you would lose the simplicity of one, and the power of the other.”
So there you have it, Apple won’t abandon the Pro market. What do you think? Can you do your professional work on the current Mac lineup?
I can’t use this computer for the things I do, but that doesn’t mean it is bad. Lets find out what this new wonder from Apple can do.
An update to the MacBook Pro lineup was long overdue. When Apple finally released the redesigned and radically changed laptop it sparked some controversy as it always does when Apple release something new.
Only 16GB RAM
No Magsafe port
Only USB-C (Thunderbolt 3)
SSD Soldered on the motherboard
It even went so far that Apple reduced price on their adapters and new displays to somewhat meet the criticism.
So with the dust settled, how does this computer really work and perform? I have used it extensively for both work and at home for about a month and here I share my highly personal opinions about this device. (That means you may disagree, and that is just fine).
Design / Build Quality
As always from Apple the build quality is top notch. It feels like a solid and well built product. The aluminum enclosure gives it a sturdy and exclusive look, it feels like this is something that can last for years. Compared to previous models this one is thinner, and it is noticeable when you pick it up and carry it.
Apple got rid of all ports and replaced them with high-speed USB-C Thunderbolt 3 ports and one minijack. I welcome these ports, its about time we got some high speed I/O and USB-C / thunderbolt 3 is great for that. The only thing I miss is the MagSafe-port. Now you have to yank the cable out of the port while you hold the laptop, but with MagSafe you could just break it off and go. I guess Apple felt that more high-speed ports was worth the tradeoff compared to the convenience with MagSafe.
This is by far the best display I have ever seen in a laptop. It supports wide color gamut (P3) on its LED-backlit display with IPS technology; 2880-by-1800 native resolution. macOS then scales the interface so it looks like 1680 x 1050 resolution.
Keyboard and Touch Bar
The Touch Bar is a cool thing, but I think it will take some time for people to get used to it. The thing I find most convenient with it is the Touch ID. Using my finger instead of typing the password to login is cool. Other than that I find myself not looking down on it that much. So I am not sure how useful it will be. At its default setup it requires an extra «click» for me to adjust volume and screen brightness but that can be solved with third party apps.
The trackpad is huge but as I am writing this my hands rest on the top corners of the trackpad and it works fine. No accidental clicks so far so the palm rejection AI is working very well.
The keyboard and keys feels weird, in a good sense. They give a distinct response when typing, but they are definitely more noisy compared to the older MacBook Pro. Still, I think they are pretty good to type on but you probably have to get used to it.
Performance & Benchmarks
Here are benchmarks to give you RAW data on how this computer performs. If you are missing a test. Leave a comment below and I might update this review to include new tests.
Model: MacBook Pro (15-inch Late 2016)
Processor: Intel Core i7-6820HQ
Memory: 16GB 2133 MHz LPDDR3
AMD Radeon Pro 455
Cinebench (macOS Sierra)
OpenGL: 78.68 fps CPU: 682 cb
Geekbench (macOS Sierra)
Single-Core Score: 4272 Multi-Core Score: 13324
Diablo 3 (macOS Sierra)
Although Diablo 3 is an older game, it works pretty good on the MacBook Pro 15-Inch Late 2016. Check out the 10 minute video below of some gameplay where I have it connected to a 1440p external display.
3DMark (Windows 10 Pro in Bootcamp)
I could only run the demo version of 3D Mark, I haven’t bought the full version.
Metro Last Light Redux (Windows 10 in Bootcamp)
Resolution: 1920 x 1080 Quality: Medium SSAA: Off Texture filtering: AF 4X Motion Blur: Off Tesselation: Normal VSync: Off Advanced PhysX: Off
Avg FPS: 50.67
Lightroom Image Export (macOS Sierra)
Version: 2015.8 Release / Camera Raw 9.8
Exporting 52 RAW files to full size jpeg / 100% quality. File size is about 40-45MB for each RAW file and the files are placed on the internal storage.
Apple MacBook Pro 15-inch Late 2016 – 3 minute and 33 seconds
Windows 10 PC / Intel 5820k CPU on mechanical hard drive – 3 minutes and 13 seconds
Windows 10 PC / Intel 5820k CPU on Samsung 950 Pro SSD – 2 minutes and 40 seconds
It looks like the Windows 10 PC wins the image export test, even when using a mechanical hard drive! Very strange.
Lightroom Image Import (macOS Sierra)
Version 2015.10.1 / Camera Raw 9.10.1
Importing 222 RAW files (about 10GB) from a Nikon D810 and building 1:1 Previews.
Importing from SD card using Sandisk USB-C SD Card Reader. Importing to an external USB3 hard drive containing a WD 4TB 7200RPM black drive.
Importing 222 RAW Files (10GB) – 5 minutes and 27 seconds
Building 1:1 previews of 222 RAW files (10GB) – 16 minutes and 32 seconds
Ironically I had to reboot into Windows 10 to get the correct results from benchmarking the internal SSD.
3006 MB/s read and 2238 MB/s write are great results. However the Samsung 960 Pro have up to 3500 MB/s read.
I wouldn’t have bought this computer myself, my employer helps paying for it. Performance wise it doesn’t quite work good enough with the stuff I do. Recording display while doing music production is too much for it. I also occasionally game, and for that a PC is the best option.
Still there are a lot of things to like with this device and I am sure it will be a great choice for a lot of people.
Are you ready to play the beloved Mario character on your iPad or iPhone? Super Mario Run was just released by Nintendo and is available from the App Store. While it is free to download and try a few stages the price is $9.99 for the game and you have to pay for it in-app.
I like keeping things tidy, both in my home and on my computers. A cluttered and unorganised life is undesirable. Even though I have good control of most aspects I still found duplicate files on my Mac while running a quick check using Gemini II from MacPaw.
So after a scan of duplicate files on my already pretty clean Mac the first result is this:
Even though I run a tight system it still found 9,49GB of data that potentially could be removed. 1,33GB was automatically selected. Control freak as I am I want to see what happens when using third party software so I clicked the Review Results and got this:
As you can see in the screenshot above it found two video file on two places. The photo library and in a local folder. In this case Gemini II automatically selected the local copy to delete and keep the file in the photo library. Normally this is probably fine, but in this case I want to keep the local file instead and delete the one in the photo library.
The software also have a section where it checks for similar files. It could be a series of similar photos for example that is not an exact match, but I would advise to you to be cautious when deleting similar files. It is always wise to have a recent backup before deleting files on your system.
With Apples move to USB-C only on their laptops you may need some adapters until manufacturers hop on the far superior USB-C standard. The most basic adapter almost everyone probably needs is the USB-C to USB adapter.
USB-C to USB adapters
Apple makes one that looks like this:
Currently they price the USB-C to USB adapter at $9 but that is only out 2016, after that the price will go up to the original price. You can get it at Amazon.
Another best selling adapter is the nonda USB-C to USB 3.0. Looks like this:
You can get this one at Amazon as well. It currently sits as #1 best seller in the USB adapter category. It is very small and neat, they also sell them in different colors so it matches the color on your apple laptop. If you are planning to use multiple of these make sure they are able to fit side by side. The Apple branded adapter shown above is certainly able to do that.
USB-C to Thunderbolt 2 adapters
When I am at work I use a Belkin Thunderbolt 2 Express HD Dock with my MacBook Pro (Retina, 15-inch, Late 2013). With that dock I just have to connect one thunderbolt 2 cable and I have everything I need. When the new 2016 model arrives it won’t work. To get it working I don’t have to buy a new docking station. The Thunderbolt 3 (USB-C) to Thunderbolt 2 adapter will get it working again. Looks like this:
MacBook Pro Docking Stations
As I said above I use the Belkin Thunderbolt 2 Express HD Dock and it has worked very well for me a few years. What I didn’t know was that I could not use all outputs on it at the same time. They state that it works with dual displays but under some conditions, namely this:
“Note about dual displays: At least one display has to be Thunderbolt or Thunderbolt 2 technology-ready. For displays that are not Thunderbolt technology-ready, the Thunderbolt port is backwards compatible with Mini DisplayPort. The dock supports either HDMI or Mini DisplayPort, but not both. The dock supports only one display at 4K cinema resolution.”
I was planning to use one Mini DisplayPort to DVI and one HDMI but that didn’t work with this dock. So make sure you really check the specs and the fine print of the dock you are buying first.
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