Apple flexes its muscles: Thanks to internally developed chips, the company challenges PC competition with an innovative desktop computer. The new iMac introduced on Tuesday is only 11.5mm thick – which is thinner than many screens without a PC inside. According to Apple, this is made possible by switching from Intel processors to internal M1 chipsets.
Among other things, this significantly saves space: instead of a bulky cooling system, only two small fans are required. Another advantage of the M1 chip is that it shares a technology platform with iPhones, making it easier for apps to work together. For the first time, the device’s keyboard is equipped with a fingerprint scanner like a portable Macbook. At 24 inches, the screen is among the previous smaller and larger models. Price from 1,445 euros is comparable to what Apple previously wanted for an iMac.
At the same time, Apple is putting accents in the design. After iMacs’ exterior appearance has remained virtually unchanged for years, Apple now offers its desktop computer in seven different colors.
The M1 chip is also used on the next generation iPad Pro tablet. The larger model with a 12.9-inch screen also has a significantly improved screen with higher contrast representation. In the Corona pandemic, the iPad has become an important source of money for Apple by working and learning from home. In the last quarter of Christmas alone, iPad sales were up 40% year-over-year.
At the event, Apple also introduced its long-awaited AirTags – tiny panels that can be attached to things like keys so they can be found again quickly. Thus Apple competes with well-known technology providers such as Tile.
Apple already has the infrastructure for this through an internal website network linked to “Where is he?” Connected. Apple devices around the world help find lost items in their vicinity. Apple confirms that communication for this purpose is encrypted and anonymous. “The AirTag is designed to track things, not people.” Newer iPhones with an onboard ultra-wide radio chip can specifically locate objects using AirTags.
About “where?” So far, only Apple devices such as iPhones or AirPods can be found. However, a few days ago, Apple opened the network to other manufacturers, including an electric bike supplier. Tile’s competitor has already criticized Apple’s potential entry into the business as unfair competition because the company will have preferred position due to the iPhone. Apple puts the AirTag at € 35 – the more expensive model of Tile trackers costs just as much. Samsung, the leader in the smartphone market, has also recently introduced similar tracking devices of its own.
The additional ads were a new version of the Apple TV box with better picture quality and a new remote control – the old version was often criticized for having an easy-to-click touch field. With a new functionality for Apple TV, the group also perfectly demonstrated the interaction of its various devices. So one must be able to use iPhone to improve color representation on TV. It should be enough to hold the phone to the screen. The iPhone sensor then analyzes the light and adjusts the box settings.
Apple also offers a podcast subscription form. Authors can only make individual episodes available to paying users. Subscription customers can also listen to podcasts without ads. Apple has expanded its subscription services business dramatically in recent years. The most important product of the group is the iPhone, which generates more than half of the revenues.
Financial analysts’ reactions focused mainly on the M1 segment, which had already received impressive reviews when it launched last year. Samik Chatterjee of JP Morgan said the introduction of the M1 chip in iPad Pro and iMac shows that the new processor will roll out faster than expected across the lineup. This may have something to do with the fact that the home office has become more important in the Corona pandemic. This may also be the reason why iPad Pro is now also available with a 5G modem to make it easier to work on the go or at home.
Amit Darianani, an analyst at Evercore, indicated that Apple was apparently unaffected by the current chip crisis. In many industrial sectors, there is currently a shortage of microprocessors, also due to the failure of important production capacities in Asia. “Both the new iPad and iMac will be shipped in the second half of May, indicating that the semiconductor shortage is not having a major impact, at least on these new products.”
On the stock exchange, investors were not impressed with Apple’s ads. The share price fell slightly, by 1.3 percent, in a weak environment. But in the four weeks leading up to the event, the price had already risen by about 8 percent (APA / Reuters)