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Apple releases OS X Lion, first thunderbolt display, new MacBook Air and Mac Mini lineup

Apple all about thunderbolt and eighth iteration of its Mac OS.

By: Steve Dougherty from Jul 20, 2011 @ 11:04 CDT

It's a big day for Apple today with an explosion of updates coming out as well as the market seeing the world's first Thunderbolt display launched.

On the subject of the new display, this is a 27-inch model which as mentioned, is the first ever to feature a Thunderbolt port. The IPS panel is based on Apple's LED Cinema Display, featuring an aluminum and glass enclosure and running a native resolution of 2560x1440.


The monitor is also packed to the kilt with a ton of other stand-out features, including an ambient light sensor, a FaceTime webcam, built-in 2.1 speaker arrangement, MagSafe charger, Gigabit ethernet connector, three USB 2.0 ports, one FireWire 800 port and as mentioned, the Thunderbolt plug.

The display is priced at $999 US and availability is said to be sometime within the next 60 days.

Apple's press release on the new Thunderbolt display can be found here.

Moving on, Apple has also rolled out its new 2011 edition MacBook Air today based on Intel's Huron River platform with the use of Sandy Bridge processors. The two sizes remain the same at 11.6-inch and 13.3-inch, with the units being 0.68-inches thick.


Running quickly over the rest of the specs, they sport an aluminum unibody enclosure, Intel HD 3000 IGP, 2/4GB RAM, 64/128/256GB SSD, Thunderbolt port, backlit keyboard, 802.11 b/g/n WiFi, Bluetooth 4.0 and FaceTime cam. Furthermore, with the release of Mac OS X Lion today (press release here), this is what comes pre-installed on the new MacBook series.

Apple promises battery life of up to 5 hours on the 11.6-inch version and 7 hours on the 13.3-inch one. There are four models in total (two 11.6-inch and two 13.3-inch) with pricing starting out at $999 and going up to $1,599.


Apple's press release on the new MacBook Air's can be found here.

Apple also launched an updated version of its Mac Mini today as well, with more power crammed under the hood (Sandy Bridge processor) and a bunch of other bits and pieces including new GPU options, Thunderbolt connectivity, option for both HDD and SSD installed, and much more.


For the full rundown on the available flavours the new Mac Mini comes in, check out the full press release from Apple here.

And finally, as mentioned just before, Apple has also made available the eighth major release of its operating system on the Mac App Store today, Mac OS X Lion. This is a 4GB upgrade package which can be purchased through the Mac App Store at $29.99 US. As of next month Apple will also be offering the operating system on a USB flash drive for $69.


For further information on Mac OS X Lion, you can locate Apple's press release on it here folks.