Apple releases macOS Sierra 10.12.3 update

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Date: Tuesday, January 24th, 2017, 05:56
Category: macOS, News, Sierra, Software, Touch Bar

It’s not a huge update, but it might help out a bit.

On Monday, Apple released macOS Sierra 10.12.3, the newest version of its macOS 10.12 operating system.

The update, which weighs in as a 1.05 gigabyte download via the App Store, adds the following fixes and changes:

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Consumer Reports retests 2016 MacBook Pro, now recommends the notebooks

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Date: Friday, January 13th, 2017, 05:17
Category: battery, Hardware, MacBook Pro, News, Touch Bar

Following a retest, Consumer Reports has given the 2016 MacBook Pro its recommendation.

The change comes after retests wherein the publication and Apple worked together. fter becoming aware of a Safari bug that may have impacted results, Consumer Reports recently started retesting on a newer build of macOS Sierra in which the bug was supposedly fixed.

Following the original tests, Consumer Reports cited that the notebook’s battery life was too varied to recommend the machines. Apple argued the point as well as the fact that the specific tests CR had run they uncovered an “obscure and intermittent” bug within Safari.

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Apple’s market share grows in Q4 2016 following launch of MacBook Pro with Touch Bar

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Date: Thursday, January 12th, 2017, 05:57
Category: Hardware, MacBook Pro, News, retail, Uncategorized

Apple apparently gained some market share in the fourth quarter of 2016 thanks to the refreshed MacBook Pro with the Touch Bar built in.

The latest data from research firms Gartner and IDC show Apple gaining ground in the PC industry, despite the market continuing to slow as a whole. IDC’s new data shows that 70.2 million PCs shipped in the fourth quarter of 2016, marking a 1.5 percent year-on-year decline, but showing a continued stabilization of the market.

For the year, IDC says that PC shipments hit 260 million, down 5.7 percent compared to 2015. Worldwide, Apple saw its marketshare rise from 7.4 percent in Q4 2015 to 7.5 percent, though overall shipments fell by .9 percent for the year as a whole. Overall, Apple ranks as the fourth largest PC vendor worldwide, with Lenovo coming in at the top, followed by HP and Dell.

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Apple, Consumer Reports find smoking gun that caused variable life in initial review

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Date: Wednesday, January 11th, 2017, 05:41
Category: battery, Developer, Hardware, MacBook Pro, News

Apple and Consumer Reports may have figured out what caused the poor battery test results that Consumer Reports highlighted during its review.

On Tuesday, both companies released reports stating that a developer setting had been activated that typical users don’t use during testing, and also that the same setting has a bug that affects performance.

In its review of the MacBook Pro, Consumer Reports said its battery life test results varied wildly, from 4 hours to 19 hours. Consumer Reports explained on its website that its notebook battery tests do not necessarily reflect real-world usage; instead, tests are designed to be consistent across different notebook for comparison’s sake. In the case of the MacBook Pro, Consumer Reports’ battery tests uses Safari in Developer mode, which is not the default setting.

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MacBook Pro, backpack may have saved passenger’s life in Fort Lauderdale shooting spree

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Date: Friday, January 6th, 2017, 22:38
Category: MacBook Pro, News

A MacBook Pro inside a backpack might have saved a passenger’s life in the Fort Lauderdale airport shooting this afternoon that left five dead and eight wounded.

“The backpack saved my life,” Steve Frappier said, speaking on CNN’s “AC360.” “[I] dropped and the backpack was still on my back and I was turned in such a way where that at one point when the shooter shot toward my direction … there was a bullet that ricocheted.”

Frappier, who described himself as sheltered on the ground “like a tortoise with the packpack on me” when the bullet struck, said the bullet ricocheted around the backpack and the notebook.

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Intel announces new Kaby Lake processors, upgraded Macs likely in 2017

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Date: Wednesday, January 4th, 2017, 05:34
Category: Hardware, iMac, Intel, Mac mini, MacBook Pro, News, Processors

Over at CES, Intel formally announced its full lineup of 7th-generation Intel Core processors, known as Kaby Lake. Kaby Lake low-power Y-Series and U-Series processors were announced in late August, but today’s unveiling covers notebook and desktop chips that could be destined for many future Apple Macs.

The new processors are built using the “14nm+” process and introduce new optimizations as compared to the previous 14nm Broadwell and Skylake chips.

The company has cited that “Kaby Lake” will bring “double digit productivity performance increases” of up to 20 percent for gaming notebooks and 25 percent for desktops, compared to 2013 Haswell chips from Intel’s prior release cycle. With 4K and 360 degree content, customers can expect up to 65 percent faster performance on notebooks. Enhanced security, a new media engine, and improvements in VR and gaming are all advertised features.

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Apple to give away Product (RED) Beats Solo3 headphones in select Asian markets as part of Chinese New Year promotion

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Date: Tuesday, January 3rd, 2017, 05:19
Category: Hardware, News, retail

If you’re in the Asian markets, this could be nifty.

As part of upcoming Chinese New Year celebrations, Apple on Monday announced customers in China, Hong Kong, Taiwan, and Singapore will receive a pair of Beats Solo3 wireless headphones with the purchase of select Mac and iPhone products as part of a one-day sale.

The sale offers a Product (RED) variety of the headphones, the color red specializing good luck and prosperity in many Asian cultures, and is a common sight around the new year.

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MacBook Pro 2016 Review – It’s going back (Updated)

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Date: Thursday, December 29th, 2016, 15:41
Category: Hardware, MacBook Pro, Review, Uncategorized

My 2016 MacBook Pro is going back.

I can’t think of the last time I returned a new Mac. I’m a textbook early adopter and have always purchased new Macs (especially notebooks) day and date when they come out.

Like most Mac users on the planet, I eagerly awaited Apple’s 2016 MacBook Pro refresh – 500 days in the making. I chose the 13-inch MacBook Pro (over the larger, 15-inch) to replace an aging MacBook Air 13-inch in my fleet.

I ordered mine (MBP 13.3 Space Gray, 256GB, S3136LL/A) on October 27, 2016 and it arrived on November 18, 2016.

My use case

Laptops, like mobile phones, are extremely personal devices. Your mileage will vary.

My 13-inch MBP is primarily for use on my lap. I have a large monitor/keyboard/mouse setup (when I need it) at home and work, so I don’t need the largest screen possible on my laptop.

I also use it on the couch, in my recliner, at the kitchen table, coffee shop, shuttle bus, airplane, train, and Uber. I value light weight over tons of ports. I prefer the 13-inch model over the 15-inch because I commute by bicycle and the 13-inch weighs a pound less:

  • MacBook Pro 13-inch – 3.02 pounds (1.37 kg)
  • MacBook Pro 15-inch – 4.02 pounds (1.83 kg)

While not quite my “weekend/vacation” laptop (the minimalist MacBook 12-inch would be better there), my MBP13 isn’t my workhorse/power user Mac either (I need discrete graphics for that), so it’s somewhere in between. I’m looking for a MacBook with a better screen to replace my MacBook Air 13-inch.

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Apple says it will work with Consumer Reports to isolate potential battery issues found in 2016 MacBook Pro

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Date: Tuesday, December 27th, 2016, 05:08
Category: battery, Google, Hardware, MacBook Pro, News, Software

apple-macbook-pro-with-touch-bar-13-inch-2016-30

Following up on Consumer Reports refusal for the first time to recommend the 2016 MacBook Pro due to inconsistent battery life, it looks like Apple will be working with the publication to try to sort out potential issues with the battery.

“Working with [Consumer Reports] to understand their battery tests,” Apple Vice President of Worldwide Marking Phil Schiller tweeted. “Results do not match our extensive lab tests or field data.” Apple claims its internal testing has seen the new MacBook Pro providing up to 10 hours of battery life when watching iTunes movies or browsing the web.

Consumer Reports’ test has come under scrutiny since publication of the non-recommendation. The tests were conducted by opening a series of 10 web pages sequentially on Safari. This tests’ inconsistency had the 13-inch MacBook Pro with Touch Bar registering 16 hours, 12.75 hours and 3.75 hours of battery life. A 15-inch MacBook Pro ranged from 18.5 hours to 8 hours of battery life.

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Consumer Reports cites varying battery performance on 2016 MacBook Pros, holds back recommendation on new notebooks

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Date: Friday, December 23rd, 2016, 05:08
Category: battery, Hardware, MacBook Pro, News, Touch Bar

macbooktouchbarediting

Consumer Reports feels there’s an issue with the 2016 MacBook Pro battery.

The publication, which has reviewed the notebook, Consumer Reports explained that while the new models held up well in terms of display quality and performance, the battery life issues were too big of an issue to overlook.

The organization tested three MacBook Pro variants: a 13-inch Touch Bar model, a 15-inch Touch Bar model, and a 13-inch model without the Touch Bar. The general consensus was that “MacBook Pro battery life results were highly inconsistent from one trial to the next.”

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