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“Completely changes what you expect from a notebook.” As it took the wrapping off the mini iPad, Apple also revealed a new 13″ MacBook Pro with shiny Retina screen.

The new Retina screen (already on iPhone 4S and iPad) boasts 4 million pixels onto its 13-inch display, or almost twice the pixels density of a HD TV at 227 pixels per inch, and has a 178-degree wide viewing angle.

Apple say the super bright screen ups the ante in the notebook race, already suffering at the hands of tablets like the iPad.

“With vivid colours, razor sharp text and more pixels than anyone else’s 15 or 17-inch notebooks, the Retina display completely changes what you expect from a notebook,” said Philip Schiller, Apple’s senior VP, Marketing.

The new Apple is also more mobile, 20% thinner at 1.9cm and at 1.62kg, weighs almost half a kg lighter than the current model.

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“The 13-inch MacBook Pro is our most popular Mac, and today it gets completely reinvented with a new thin and light design, fast flash storage and a gorgeous Retina display,” Schiller said at the Apple launch in California, yesterday. 

The 13-inch Retina display uses IPS technology for less reflection and better contrast than the current generation, meaning it’s better for outdoor use.

Under the bonnet, the Macbook Pro features a 2.5 GHz Intel Core i5 processor but has the option of a faster 2.9 GHz Intel i7 processor, for a bit more cash.

The new Apple notebook also has Intel HD Graphics 4000, 8GB of 1600 MHz memory, and the option of a max of 768GB of flash storage (min. 128GB), which it claims is up to four times faster than rival notebook hard drives.

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The new Pro runs OS X Mountain Lion, iCloud storage, and promises “up to” 7 hours of battery life. Connectivity wise, the 13″ Apple has two Thunderbolt ports, two USB 3.0 ports, and a new HDMI port.

 

It also sports a FaceTime HD camera, dual microphones, improved speakers, three-stream 802.11n Wi-Fi, Bluetooth 4.0, and a MagSafe 2 power port.

The MacBook Pro is available now (with Intel Core i5 and 128GB of storage) starting at AUD$1899, with 256GB storage AUD$2199 at Apple Online Store (http://store.apple.com/au), Apple’s retail stores and resellers.

Configure-to-order options include faster dual-core Intel Core i7 processors and flash storage up to 768GB.

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