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Apple gives iMac major upgrade, keeps price steady

Alvin R. Cabral/Dubai
Filed on August 4, 2020 | Last updated on August 4, 2020 at 08.04 pm
Mac sales were up over 21 per cent in Apple's latest fiscal third quarter.

New processors and graphics to give significant performance boost

Apple on Tuesday announced that its 27-inch iMac received significant hardware updates, underscoring the iPhone-maker's continued push of offering professional-grade computers across its ecosystem of devices, while also maintaining the same price points.

The addition of faster Intel processors of up to 10 cores, double the memory, next-gen AMD Graphics and swifter solid state drives (SSDs) with quadruple the capacity, among other bump-ups, will position the iMac as a go-to choice for professionals and students alike.

The release comes days after Apple announced blowout third-quarter financial results, with the Cupertino-based company reporting advances across the board. Mac sales for the three months ended June 27 raked in $7.079 billion in sales, a 21.6 per cent leap from the previous quarter in 2019, showing sustained growth amid the global coronavirus pandemic.

"Now more than ever, our customers are relying on the Mac. And many of them need the most powerful and capable iMac we've ever made," Tom Boger, Apple's senior director of Mac and iPad product marketing, said in a statement.

"With blazing performance, double the memory, SSDs across the line with quadruple the storage, an even more stunning Retina 5K display, a better camera, higher fidelity speakers and studio-quality mics, the 27-inch iMac is loaded with new features at the same price. It's the ultimate desktop, to work, create, and communicate."

The upgrades will particularly help professional users, as they result in up to 65 per cent more plug-ins in Logic Pro X, up to 40 per cent faster 8K ProRes transcode in Final Cut Pro X, up to 35 per cent quicker rendering with Arnold in Autodesk Maya and up to 25 per cent swifter build time in Xcode.

The new AMD Graphics chip - the Radeon Pro 5000 series, which can deliver up to 55 per cent faster performance - are to enhance GPU-based rendering, multiple streaming of 4K videos and graphics-intensive games.

And a 16GB graphics option for the iMac has also been introduced - double the previous generation and another first for the machine.

Other improvements include a Retina 5K display with True Tone and a nano-texture option for sharper images; a 1080p FaceTime HD camera; higher-fidelity speakers and studio-grade microphones.

The upgrades make the iMac a well-rounded and professional-calibre computer. The even bigger news is that Apple has decided to keep prices same; the updated iMac starts at Dh7,599.

More updates

Meanwhile, Apple also announced improvements to its other iMac models. The 21-inch iMac will now have SSDs as a standard, with the option to configure it with a Fusion Drive.

The iMac Pro, on the other hand, now has a 10-core Intel Xeon processor, aimed at users who need workstation-class performance.

And the next version of macOS, Big Sur, will be available to users this fall. The free update introduces a major redesign, along with powerful enhancements to key apps.

- alvin@khaleejtimes.com


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