In A Rare January Launch, Apple Introduces MacBooks With New M2 Chips

In a surprise launch weeks ahead of schedule, Apple Inc. unveiled MacBooks powered by its new and faster M2 Pro and M2 Max chips on Tuesday.

The use of Apple’s latest versions of the M2 chip, which debuted last year, is a result of the tech giant’s decision in 2020 to use in-house designed semiconductors after 15 years of relying on Intel’s technology.

The new Mac mini will be available on January 24 for $599. The 14-inch and 16-inch MacBook Pro models with the latest chips start at $1,999, compared to $1,299 for a 13-inch model with the M2 chip.

The new MacBook Pro models had been expected for months, but due to supply-chain issues, the launch was pushed back from last year to early 2023, according to Bloomberg News in October.

“This is all connected to the delayed chipset transition … With it being delayed, Apple has been faced with the questions to wait for the traditional, expected launch or actually do something a bit unexpected,” said Canalys analyst Runar Bjørhovde.

“This is a great way of throwing things around and surprising the consumers and competitors,” Bjørhovde said, adding that the announcement could generate some hype at a time when the broader personal computer market is in a slump.

Apple’s stock rose about 1%, outperforming a generally weaker market. In 2022, the stock fell about 27%, the most since the 2008 financial crisis.

According to Apple, the new M2 Pro has nearly 20% more transistors than the M1 Pro and twice as many as the M2, allowing programs like Adobe Photoshop to run heavy workloads “faster than ever.”

According to a Gartner report released on Tuesday, the company, which gets its chips manufactured by Taiwan’s TSMC, replaced chipmaker Nvidia as one of the top ten semiconductor vendors by revenue last year.

“We estimate that the value of these (Apple) chips is equivalent to $17.6 billion in 2022. The growth coming from increased cost of ever more complex chips,” said Andrew Norwood, VP Analyst at Gartner.

Apple’s first event of the year is usually held in March, when it releases new iMacs and accessories. According to Bloomberg News, this year’s spring event could include the debut of a long-awaited augmented reality headset.

(Adapted from Reuters.com)



Categories: Economy & Finance, Entrepreneurship, Geopolitics, Regulations & Legal, Strategy, Sustainability

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