Apple Upgrades MacBook Pro

Dennis Faas's picture

We've heard a lot in recent weeks about attempts by Acer and Asus to overcome Apple's dominance of the high-speed, extreme-portability niche computer market with the release of their 'Ultrabooks'.

Only time will tell if these slick and slim new PCs can take down the MacBook Air, but in the meantime Apple is boosting the power of its MacBook Pro line of not-so-portable but exceptionally powerful computers.

This is the first update that the MacBook Pro has received from Apple since early this year, when the company introduced Intel's Sandy Bridge processor architecture.

Hardware Specs Up, Prices Stay the Same

While the specifications for the MacBook Pros have changed considerably, the prices have not changed for the 13-inch, 15-inch and 17-inch versions of these notebooks. (Source:

It's only under the hood where Apple has done some tinkering. The 13-inch MacBook Pro has been boosted to either a 2.4GHz Intel Core i5 or 2.7GHz Intel Core i7 processor. Storage space has also been increased, from 320GB to 500GB (for the 2.4GHz version) and from 500GB to 750GB (for the 2.7GHz version).

The medium build of this line, the 15-inch display option, has seen the speed of its processors expanded as well. Buyers of this model can choose from 2.2GHz or 2.4GHz Intel Core i7 CPUs and will also get a new AMD Radeon graphics card to boot. However, hard drive sizes for the 15-inch model have not changed.

The top-of-the-line 17-inch MacBook Pro, which retails for a pretty hefty $2,499, now includes a 2.4GHz Intel Core i7 CPU and a powerful graphics card, the 1GB AMD Radeon HD 6770M. (Source:

MacBook Sales Strong in Third Quarter

It's expected the upgrades will give Apple a sales boost entering holiday season 2011. It's not a boost the company really needs, however, as third quarter sales of Apple computers hit record levels with nearly five million machines sold. That's up more than a million units over last year's same quarter.

The new MacBook Pros are currently available online and at brick and mortar retailers.

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