Apple Slashes Retina MacBook and MacBook Air Prices, Boosts Specs

By Binu Paul email: | Feb 14, 2013 07:51 AM EST

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Apple has slashed the prices for several configurations of its 13-inch Retina MacBook Pro and 13-inch MacBook Air models in addition to adding faster processors to both the 13-inch and 15-inch Retina MacBook Pros.

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Announcing the new prices, Apple said the MacBook Pro with 'Retina' display and 128 GB of flash memory will now cost $1,499 (decreased from $1,699) while the new model with 2.6 GHz processor and 256GB of flash is priced at $1,699. "The 15-inch MacBook Pro with Retina display now features a faster 2.4 GHz quad-core processor, and the 15-inch notebook comes with a new 2.7 GHz quad-core processor and 16GB of memory," Apple announced. According to the renewed price list, the 13-inch MacBook Air with 256GB of flash is available at $1,399 now, a price drop of $100.

The price cut came on the heels of Apple CEO Time Cook's announcement that the company is looking for ways to drive prices down as it improves its supply chain management. He was speaking at the Goldman Sachs Technology and Internet Conference.

The last time Apple initiated a price cut of this size was at the peak of recession back in mid-2009 when it slashed the prices of its already-existing models, notably a 15 percent reduction of MacBook Pro. Apple also slashed prices of its revamped MacBook Air line last year upon the introduction of its  a sub-$1,000 11-inch ultra-thin notebook.

Meanwhile, the rumor mills are buzzing about Apple's low-priced iPhone. Topeka Capital analyst Brian Whit predicts that the company may release a low-priced iPhone this year which will be called 'iPhone mini' or 'iPhone Air.'

However, Jeffries analyst Peter Misek said the rumored 4.8-inch iPhone 6 will not come until June 2014 because of some manufacturing issues. "We believe a summer CY14 launch was originally planned, but Apple tried to accelerate it to stem its market share losses. The earliest Apple could have launched a 4.8" phone would have been this fall (with a target of Oct); however, our checks indicate that Apple's suppliers are running into difficulties trying to scale the screen size from 4" to 4.8","Apple Insider quoted Misek as saying.

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