Apple unveiled its next generation MacBook Pro with Retina Display Monday at the Worldwide Developers Conference (WWDC) on Monday.
“It’s a true breakthrough in engineering – there’s never been a notebook this thin, this light, this powerful for professional use,” said Phil Schiller, Apple senior vice president.
One of the most expected MacBook Pro’s features is 2,880 x 1,800 Retina Display. The previous 15-inch device had a 1,440 x 900 display resolution. Retina Display is defined by Apple as having a “pixel density so high your eye is unable to distinguish individual pixels.”
However, there’s one bad news. The Retina MacBook starts at $2199. Yes, you’ve read correctly. $2199 for a laptop. You could buy something like 7 Windows laptops for that much from Best Buy, where laptops are crazy-expensive.
However, it seems like MacBook Pro approves its cost. Ben Bajarin, an analyst, says it’s “the best display on a notebook [he] has ever seen” and said it “set a new bar for a display on a notebook.”
“The screen looks amazing. Colors pop, images have great depth,” said CNET agrees, “but the biggest difference…is in text. Compare blocks of text side by side (using the “reader” button in Safari is a great way to do that), and the difference is unmistakable.”
The new generation device is available in two configurations, a 2.3GHz quad-core i7 processor with 256GB of flash storage for $2,200, and a 2.6GHz model with 512GB of flash storage for $2,799.
“Copying a 1.22GB test folder from a USB 3.0 drive took 21 seconds, which is half the time it took to copy the same folder using a USB 2.0 drive on the previous MacBook Pro model,” said PC Magazine‘s Joel Santo Domingo.
“The two Thunderbolt ports are a boon for the video editor: You can hook up to 14 Thunderbolt-compatible devices, seven devices per port,” he added.
However, Jason Gilbert from The Huff Post, writes: “So, how much money would you spend on a new Retina MacBook Pro if you upgraded everything and bought every accessory offered to you in the shopping process?”
“Turns out: About $9,000. For a new laptop. You could buy a perfectly lovely two-bedroom house in Stockton, Calif., for that much cash. ”
Meanwhile, the units have already slipped in shipping times after only one day of availability, suggesting either higher-than estimated demand, or that the initial production run on the more-expensive models was low.
According to Electronista, non-Retina 15-inch MacBook Pros starts at $1,800 and are still listed as being “in stock.”
Overall, first impressions of the new MacBook Pro with Retina Display have been positive. Forrester analyst Frank Gillet predicted that Apple’s new laptop pushes the company to the head of the pack, by at least a year.
“It will likely take rivals a year or two to catch up,” Gillet told Wired. “Anybody can go buy the processors from Intel, but even the track pads from these companies can’t match Apple.”
He went on: “Apple has more discipline and control over every aspect of these machines, so it’s tough for the other guys, the Windows guys, to compete.”
“The new MacBook Pro is the evolution of a species,” added Carolina Milanesi, a Gartner analyst. “All computers will have to be thinner and lighter because, as consumers, we are taking them different places.”
“But there really is nothing out there like the MacBook Pro Retina yet. Apple raised the bar today,” Milanesi added.