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New Apple on the block: iPads, Macs

Posted: 17 Oct 2014 ?? ?Print Version ?Bookmark and Share

Keywords:iPad Air 2? tablet? iMac? Mini 3?

Apple is on a roll. The Cupertino-based company released updates to its iPad, PC and OS yesterday, several weeks after the big debut of iPhone 6. The iPad Air 2, iPad Mini 3, iMac and Apple Mini may all look alike, but they come with faster chips and much better graphics.

Apple CEO Tim Cook called the latest line-up the strongest the company has ever had and "something only Apple can create." Powering the tablet line-up is Apple's A8X silicon, its second-generation 64bit architecture built with 3 billion transistors. True to "X" form, Apple officials say the SoC has 40 per cent faster CPU and 2.5 time GPU performance than previous versions.

Apple CEO Tim Cook

Tim Cook with Apple's new line-up of devices. (Source: Apple)

The new iPads also come with Apple's M8 motion coprocessor, faster Wi-Fi at 802.11ac with MIMO, and throughput speeds of up to 866Mbit/s. The tablets are capable of up to 150Mbit/s LTE on 20 bands, and they sport a 10-hour battery life. Apple Pay and Touch ID, a highly requested feature, will also be available in the new generation.

Improved cameras and displays are perhaps the most exciting features on the 6.1mm-thick iPad Air 2 and iPad Mini. The Air 2 has an 8-megapixel camera capable of 1,080p video, with an Apple-designed image signal processor in the A8X chip, as well as improved FaceTime camera. The iPad Mini, on the other hand, is equipped with a 5-megapixel camera. Both are based on a proprietary Retina display Apple created by removing the air gap between the touchscreen and the glass, reducing internal reflection for a sharper image.

Unsurprisingly, the new line-up of tablets comes with a flurry of incremental upgrades. And as with the pre-iPhone 6 release, rumours about what the tablets would bring to the table circulated. And whether or not their features meet everyone's expectations, Apple describes the Air 2 as the most thinnest and powerful iPad ever. (Read the news here: iOS tablets: What will new iPads bring?)

Apple tablets, PC

Apple's new tablets and PC have Retina display and specially designed hardware. (Source: Apple)

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