We all knew that Apple had a lot more products to cover during today’s event, it all seemed very exciting at the beginning and during the event. But after looking at the details a bit more, it doesn’t seem so attractive anymore.
The major announcement was the iPad Air, which is the full-size iPad with a fancy name. Call it iPad 5 or iPad Air, they are all the same thing. Nothing too major about this product, in my opinion, as it is just a natural progression of the iPad lineup. Apple did not include many of the predicted features like Touch ID, and gold colour. That is okay, the real disappointment is the iPad mini retina because they increased the price to ridiculous levels. It is now US$399 or HK$3,088 for the base model, compared to the iPad Air for HK$3888. I really see not a big reason to buy the mini as Apple clearly tries to reduce the cannibalisation of the full-size iPad. So right now we only have 1 choice left for Apple tablets. It is kind of like the iPhone 5C, it is not even priced attractively, not many people are willing to buy it once you see what you get when you pay a little bit more for the iPhone 5s. I am glad I bought the Nexus 7 2013 instead of waiting for the iPad mini retina, which sells for about half the price. This happened to the MacBook Pros as well.
They upgraded the MacBook Pros and the pricing strategy is equally horrible for the lower end models. All MacBook Pros got a reduced price, but entry model specs downgraded quite a lot. With the 13-inch, you can get one for HK$9,988, as opposed to $11,488 previously. However, the specs are down – you only get 4GB of RAM. It is not even attractive to buy this model at all. The 15-inch entry model got a bigger downgrade – they removed the discrete GPU completely. They are charging us HK$15,288 for a 15-inch with no discrete GPU, as compared to $16,888 with a discrete GPU previously. Which is the better deal? I think the latter is. Apple is clearly forcing consumers to buy the higher end model for $19,988, we could have gotten something similar for $16,888 before.
I don’t know, but Apple seems to be very tight with their bottom line. They seem to need to squeeze every drop of cash from buyers to boost their profits. I mean it just kind of turns me off with pricing like this, I know they have always done it like this, but was not this obvious. I genuinely feel I could get a better deal with the old models than the new.
As for the free OS X Mavericks given out, I won’t be installing it on my MBA 2011 running Snow Leopard. They are clearly trying to slow down old computers to force users to upgrade their hardware. There is no free lunch. However, I will install it on my 27” iMac.