Apple's new 13-in. MacBook Pro gets Magic Keyboard

Apple is getting on with business, introducing a faster 13-in. MacBook Pro model now equipped with the revised Magic Keyboard.

Apple, Mac, macOS, MacBook Pro, 13-inch MacBook Pro, Mac to business, Magic Keyboard

Apple is getting down to business, introducing a new and faster 13-inch MacBook Pro laptop equipped with the Magic Keyboard; it may be just the computer many remote workers need.

Faster and more 'Magic'

Apple has doubled the quantity of storage inside all configurations of the new pro portable, which boasts 10th-generation, quad-core Intel processors that the company says can deliver “up to” 80% faster graphics. Standard storage options now range from 256GB to 1TB, with up to 4TB options available.

The company also promises up to 10 hours of use on a single charge and up to 30-days standby time for these machines. It seems inevitable the Macs will also support the new Battery Health Management feature coming in macOS 10.15.5.

On performance

Performance is boosted with the introduction of 16GB of 3,733MHz memory as a standard configuration on select models.

Customers can also choose a 32GB memory option, which is a new first for the 13-in. models. In simple terms, that option means you’ll get much better graphics and application performance.

The 13-in. Retina display delivers more than 4 million pixels and millions of colors, along with 500 nits of brightness and support for the P3 wide colour gamut. It supports True Tone, too.

Much remains the same, so you’ll also find the Touch Bar and Touch ID, Force Touch trackpad, and the T2 chip, which verifies software security and encrypts data (and Touch ID) as you use the system. Also featured: 802.11ac Wi-Fi and Bluetooth 5.0, though the FaceTime camera remains a 720p unit.

The Magic Keyboard

The backlit Magic Keyboard replaces Apple’s ill-starred Butterfly Keyboard design and is already available on the 16-in. MacBook Pro and MacBook Air. It’s based on a more traditional (and more reliable) scissor mechanism that allows 1mm of key travel in use, so it feels comfortable to use.

The newly introduced physical Escape key has also proved popular on the 16-in. model, and most reviews of the new keyboard design agree the typing experience is much improved compared to the previous design.

What about the processor?

The latest quad-core Intel chips in the MacBook Pro offer Turbo Boost speeds of up to 4.1GHz. The company says this means users upgrading from a 13-in. MacBook Pro with a dual-core processor will see up to 2.8 times faster performance.

As for the integrated graphics, they deliver 4K support. Worth noting: the graphics support enables the high-end 2.0GHz 13-inch MacBook Pros to drive Apple’s Pro Display XDR at full 6K resolution.

What Apple says

In a press release, Tom Boger, Apple’s senior director of Mac and iPad Product Marketing, focused on the performance, display and all-day battery life. Noting the addition of the Magic Keyboard, he said:

“With these updates, our entire notebook lineup features the Magic Keyboard for the best typing experience ever on a Mac notebook, offers twice the standard storage than before, and delivers even more performance.”

One more thing

Apple is pushing hard to get people using its TV+ entertainment service, which is why for a limited time, customers who purchase a new MacBook Pro get one year of Apple TV+ on the Apple TV app for free.

How much do these Macs cost?

Pricing starts at $1,299 (less for education customers).

Four standard models are available:

  • 1.4GHZ, 256GB, 8GB memory: $1,299.
  • 1.4GHz, 512GB, 8GB memory: $1,499.
  • 2.0GHz, 512GB, 16GB memory: $1,799.
  • 2.0GHz, 1TB, 16GB memory: $1,999.

(Both 1.4GHz models have two Thunderbolt 3 ports as standard, while the 2.0GHz models offer four such ports.)

These Macs retain the Pro range’s aluminium unibody design and are available in space gray or silver. They weigh 3 pounds.

Available now, shipping this week

The new 13-in. MacBook Pro models are available for order now and will begin to reach customers later this week. Additional configure-to-order options are available.

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Copyright © 2020 IDG Communications, Inc.

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