Buyer's Guide: Deals on iPad Air 2, MacBook Air, iMac, Apple Accessories, and More

The Christmas holiday is less than a week away, and while deals have tapered off a bit this week, there are still a few discounts to be had on the iMac, MacBook Air,
Mac Pro, Retina MacBook Pro, and older iPads. There's also one last deal on the iPad Air 2 that drops the price quite a bit.

We've also got discounts on some great potential gifts, including personalized iPhone cases from Casetify, wireless headphones from Jaybird, the popular Pencil stylus from FiftyThree, and more in this week's Buyer's Guide deals post.

iPad Air 2


If you're in need of an iPad Air 2 and didn't take advantage of the deals offered around Black Friday, there's one last discount available this week. Target is offering 15 percent off the iPad Air 2 in all colors and capacities through its Cartwheel app.

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That drops the price of the entry-level Wi-Fi only model to $424, down from $499. The discount will only be available on Friday and Saturday, and only in Target stores.

iPhone


Walmart is continuing its $50 off deal on the iPhone 6 and 6 Plus, dropping the price of the 16GB iPhone 6 to $129, down from the previous $179 price tag, and it's also offering the 16GB iPhone 6 Plus for $229, down from $279. The iPhone 5s is on sale at Walmart as well, now available for $49 instead of $79.

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A two-year contract is required to get the discounted price, and Walmart also offers a trade-in program to drop the pricing even lower. Deals are available in-store only and will last through February.

Retina MacBook Pro


MacMall is selling the 2013 2.6GHz/16GB/1TB Retina MacBook Pro priced at $2,599.99, down from the regular price of $3,199, a $600 discount. Several 2014 Retina MacBook Pro models are also discounted at various retailers, as seen below:

macbook_pro_13_15_late_2013
- 13-inch 2.6GHz/8GB/256GB (B&H Photo) - $1,349, $100 off
- 13-inch 2.8GHz/8GB/512GB (Best Buy) (B&H Photo) - $1,599, $200 off
- 15-inch 2.2GHz/16GB/256GB (B&H Photo) - $1,699, $200 off
- 15-inch 2.5GHz/16GB/512GB (B&H Photo) - $2,199, $300 off

Mac Pro


- 4-core 3.7GHz/12GB/256GB (B&H Photo) - $2,599, $400 off
- 6-core 3.5GHz/16GB/256GB (B&H Photo) (Adorama) - $3,499, $500 off

iMac


- 21.5-inch 2.9GHz/8GB/1TB (Adorama) (B&H Photo) - $1349, $150 off
- 27-inch 3.2GHz/8GB/1TB (Adorama) (B&H Photo) - $1,629.99, $170 off
- 27-inch 2.4GHz/8GB/1TB (Adorama) (B&H) - $1,799.99, $200 off
- 27-inch Retina 3.5GHz/8GB/1TB (B&H Photo) - $2,299, $200 off

retina-imac-27

MacBook Air


- 11.6-inch 1.4GHz/4GB/128GB (Adorama) (B&H Photo) - $799, $100 off
- 11.6-inch 1.4GHz/4GB/256GB (Best Buy) - $899, $200 off
- 13.3-inch 1.4Ghz/4GB/128GB (B&H Photo) - $899, $100 off

macbook_air_yosemite_roundup

Original iPad Air


Best Buy is offering discounts of $50 (Wi-Fi) to $100 (Cellular) off all of its original iPad Air stock, dropping the price of the 16GB entry-level Wi-Fi only model to $349.99 and the 16GB entry-level Cellular model to $379.99.

iPad mini 2


Best Buy is also offering discounts of $50 off all Wi-Fi iPad mini 2 models and $100 off all Cellular models. The iPad mini 2 can be a particularly good deal compared to the iPad mini 3, as the only difference is Touch ID.

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With the discount, the entry-level 16GB Wi-Fi only iPad mini 2 is available for $249.99 and the entry-level 16GB Cellular model is available for $279.99.

Apple Accessories


Casetify is offering a 20 percent discount on all of its products, plus free shipping with the code CHEERS20. The site specializes in custom cases for the iPhone, which make great gifts, and it also sells a range of iPhone gadgets. The deal will last through 12/25.

casetify
For those of you with an older iPhone, Groupon is selling Star Wars cases for the iPhone 4/4s/5/5s for $7.99, down from $19.99. A refurbished Jawbone Mini Jambox speaker can be purchased from Groupon for $59.99, a savings of $59, and the site is also offering the Jawbone UP for $59.99, a $70 savings.

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A refurbished 4,000mAh Mophie portable battery charger is available from Groupon for $29.99, down from $79.95. Beats by Dre Pro Over-Ear headphones are available for $299 from Groupon, down from $399. StackSocial is selling the Rocketcases Afterburner iPhone 6/6 Plus battery case (non-MFi Certified) for $40/$46, a savings of 33 percent.

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The now-discontinued Beats Beatbox Portable Speaker can be purchased for $249.99 from Best Buy, a savings of $150. Garmin's Heads-Up Plus Display Navigation System can be purchased for $74.99 from Groupon, a savings of $86.

beatsspeaker
Amazon is selling the Jawbone UP24 for $70, $20 off the standard price. The site is also offering the Pencil by FiftyThree Digital Stylus for $10 off, dropping the price to $39.95 for the graphite model and $49.95 for the walnut version.

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Jaybird is offering 25 percent off its entire stock of wireless headphones with the code JBHOLIDAYS, and throwing in complimentary 2 day shipping that guarantees delivery in time for Christmas. This deal is good today only.

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MacRumors is an affiliate partner with some of these vendors.

CalDigit's Thunderbolt Station 2 Launches in January With $170 Pre-Order Pricing

CalDigit today announced that the follow-up to its popular original Thunderbolt Station, the Thunderbolt Station 2, is now available for pre-order with an expected ship date of January 26, 2015.

The new dock will retail for $199.99, but CalDigit is offering a limited pre-order price of $169.99 that runs all the way up to the day before release, January 25. The new station keeps the same functionality of connecting multiple devices with one Thunderbolt cable, but updates it with new Thunderbolt 2 and dual eSATA 6G ports. The Thunderbolt Station 2 also allows users a vertical orientation option the original lacked.

Thunderbolt Station
The Thunderbolt Station 2 also comes with HDMI, three USB 3.0 ports, Gigabit Ethernet, audio in/out ports, the ability to connect high-resolution 4K displays to its HDMI port, and two Thunderbolt 2 ports.
The Thunderbolt™ Station 2 allows users to connect all their devices through a single Thunderbolt™ cable. Featuring dual Thunderbolt™ 2 ports for integrating a 4K workflow, the Thunderbolt™ Station 2 allows users to connect a high-resolution 4K monitor to the HDMI port. This is ideal for professional users who need to connect modern 4K displays to their computers.

“The power of Thunderbolt™ 2 allows the Thunderbolt™ Station 2 to be the central hub of modern 4K workflows. Not only can users connect a 4K monitor, they can also daisy-chain 4K capable devices such as Thunderbolt™ storage for the ultimate 4K workflows”, said Kosta Panagos, Director of Marketing at CalDigit.
The release of the Thunderbolt Station 2 sees CalDigit joining several other dock manufacturers such as Elgato and OWC who have recently caught up to the Thunderbolt 2 standard ports, which were introduced on Macs beginning late last year.

The Thunderbolt Station 2 can be pre-ordered from the CalDigit official website for $169.99 until January 25, 2015, after which it will retail for $199.99.

'Watch ABC' Apple TV App Updated with Full Episodes for All Users

watchabcABC has updated its Watch ABC Apple TV app to allow all Apple TV users to watch full episodes of ABC shows a week after they air without having to verify their TV provider. Previously, users had to sign in via their TV provider to watch any full episodes.
All Apple TV viewers can now access full episodes a week after they air. Like WATCH ABC for mobile devices and desktop, viewers can now watch such shows as ScandalHow to Get Away With MurderModern Familyblack-ishOnce Upon A Time and Castle, among others, a week after they air.  Sign in is required for ABC's live network feed and its most current episodes
However, users are only allowed to watch the five TV show episodes prior to the most current one. Users who sign in to the app with their TV provider gain the ability to watch full episodes of the last five episodes of any TV show the day after they air and live TV.

The app was also updated with a brand new look and a continuous play mode that automatically starts the next episode for the viewer, similar to the system Netflix uses in its apps.

Djay for Mac Goes Pro With Spotify Integration, Revamped Interface, and More Powerful Features

Algoriddim has long been known for its popular DJ app djay, which began life on the Mac before moving to the iPad, iPhone and most recently Android, with the various versions winning a number of awards and contributing to making djay the world's best-selling DJ app with over 15 million downloads.

With djay having proven popular among both amateur and professional DJs, users have been asking for more from the software, and Algoriddim is delivering that today with the release of djay Pro for Mac. Going well beyond the previous version of djay for Mac, djay Pro takes advantage of Apple's latest hardware and software improvements to support 64-bit processing, 60 frames-per-second graphics rendering, up to four decks, seamless integration with dozens of MIDI controllers, and a variety of audio effects.


On the library side, djay Pro offers an all-new music library with inline search, instant preview, and song recommendations powered by The Echo Nest, as well as easy integration of iTunes libraries and, for the first time on desktop, Spotify playlists. Users can easily drag and drop tracks from iTunes and Spotify libraries, not only from within djay Pro but also from iTunes and Spotify Mac apps.

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Turntable view

In our testing, djay Pro performed extremely well, with high-quality turntable and waveform graphics making for a pleasing user experience. And while djay Pro adds a number of new effects and other tools compared to the previous version, the app's thoughtful and intuitive layout makes it easy both for experts to dive right in and for beginners to keep things simple at first before growing into djay Pro's full capabilities.

A customizable layout allows users to choose from several modes dividing the app window between music library/queueing and the turntables or waveforms, and the library portion of the window can be easily toggled between light and dark views to match user preference for various environments. Users of both Mac and iOS versions of djay will also find their cue points, beat grid edits, meta data synced between the apps via iCloud.

djay_pro_waveforms
Horizontal waveform view with four decks

All of the new features included in djay Pro do come at a price, however, with Algoriddim electing to offer the new app at an introductory price of $49.99 and an eventual regular price of $79.99, a significant increase over the $19.99 standard pricing of the previous version. But with djay Pro aimed in large part at serious DJs looking for the most powerful tools for Mac, Algoriddim believes djay Pro still offers a very solid value compared to traditional DJ setups.

The base package includes a set of five "Essentials" audio effects such as Echo and Flanger, and a one-time $9.99 in-app purchase adds 34 more effects from Sugar Bytes for use across all of the user's Mac and iOS versions of djay.

djay Pro is launching today via the Mac App Store [Direct Link] and replaces the original version of djay for Mac, which will no longer be available. djay Pro requires a minimum of OS X 10.9 Mavericks, and a Spotify Premium subscription is required to access the Spotify catalog from within the app. A free seven-day trial of Spotify Premium is available for djay Pro users to test out the service and integration.

Apple Seeds Safari 8.0.3, 7.1.3, and 6.2.3 to Developers

safariiconApple today seeded a new Safari 8.0.3 beta for developers running OS X Yosemite, along with a Safari 7.1.3 beta for Mavericks and a Safari 6.2.3 beta for Mountain Lion.

Registered Mac developers can download the new Safari builds through the Software Update mechanism in the Mac App Store or through the Mac Dev Center. In the release notes for the new betas, Apple asks developers to focus on features like Extensions, Password AutoFill, HTML5 video playback, notifications, and more.
Focus Areas
Please focus testing on the following areas:

- General website compatibility
- Extension compatibility
- Password AutoFill
- HTML5 video playback on popular video sites
- Using the Web Inspector to debug websites
- Reading List read/unread state
- Editing bookmarks in the Favorites Bar and Bookmarks Sidebar
- Website notifications
In addition to the forthcoming Safari update, Apple is also working on another general OS X Yosemite update, OS X 10.10.2, which saw its second beta seeded to developers last Friday.

Gene Munster Still Believes in the Apple Television Set, Thinks 2016 Launch Likely

After numerous failed attempts at predicting Apple's first foray into television sets, Piper Jaffray analyst Gene Munster has not yet given up hope that the company will deliver. During an interview at Business Insider's 2014 Ignition Conference earlier this month, Munster made yet another prediction on the rumored Apple technology, citing a two-year wait for Apple's own television set.

Munster regarded this year's prediction as an "annual penance" for being consistently incorrect in guessing the release date for Apple's rumored television set. Instead of the usual one-year prediction Munster has been throwing out the past few years, the analyst looked into the past to further support his two-year suggestion for Apple's next big product.

Screenshot (38)
"Apple takes a long time in-between products. If we look back over the last decade, it's 3-6 years between major products. And so, ultimately the Watch is what hit this year, they're gonna refine that next year along with payments. And then that probably gets us into 2016 as more of a time frame for the actual television."
Though it may seem a bit behind the game for Apple to launch a television set when connected TVs are already becoming ubiquitous and prices continue to decline, Munster looks at the lack of innovation and the true potential of Apple entering the market as significant positives for the company.

"So far the connected TV market really hasn't done much, they sell a lot of units but people don't really use the connected TV part unless they're accessing Netflix. So the concept of what the opportunity can really hold around connected TVs hasn't even been tapped, so they haven't missed out on anything."
Business Insider went on to ask Munster about the potential market gains Apple would see if they entered into the television set space. Munster addressed the current plateauing market of around 220 million TVs sold every year, hypothesizing that if Apple captured 10 percent of that market (Apple currently has 20 percent of the smartphone market) it could possibly sell around 22 million TV sets per year. Munster thinks that that market size is "big enough that it could be a 5 or 10 percent addition to the overall size of Apple."

Finally, Munster addressed the price of the possible Apple TV set, thinking it could run around $1,500, or "about double a comparable sized TV." Rumors began swirling around an Apple TV set a few years ago, particularly after Steve Jobs himself hinted at a breakthrough in his authorized biography published shortly after his death in late 2011. Rumors have been mostly quiet in recent months, however, as attention has turned away from a TV set or even a revamped set-top box and toward the imminent launch of the Apple Watch.

Related roundup: Apple TV

BBC One Documentary to Profile Working Conditions in Apple's Supply Chain

BBC One later this week is airing a documentary, Apple's Broken Promises, that profiles factory conditions for overseas workers who are producing components and assembling the company's iPhone 6. Richard Bilton and his team at current affairs program Panorama went undercover to examine Chinese factory life and mining conditions in Indonesia.

apples-broken-promises-bbc-one
Apple is the most valuable brand on the planet, making products that everyone wants - but how are its workers treated when the world isn't looking? Panorama goes undercover in China to show what life is like for the workers making the iPhone 6. And it's not just the factories. Reporter Richard Bilton travels to Indonesia to find children working in some of the most dangerous mines in the world. But is the tin they dig out by hand finding its way into Apple's products?
The hour-long documentary is slated to air on BBC One at 9:00 PM UK time on December 18. It will be available online for UK viewers shortly after the documentary airs later this week, and may at some point air globally on BBC World News.

This isn't the first time Apple's supply chain factories have been profiled by a major media outlet. ABC's Nightline visited Foxconn's factories in 2012 with the permission of Apple, which provided an inside look at its iPad and iPhone production line. The report documented the long shifts and low wages paid to the workers but also pointed out that Apple was being responsive to concerns that its workers were being treated unfairly.

The Nightline profile was a response to an earlier and overwhelmingly negative report by The New York Times that uncovered the poor working conditions at Apple's Chinese supplier facilities.

Buyer's Guide: Deals on Retina MacBook Pro, iPhones, iPad Air 2, Apple Accessories, and More

With the December holidays approaching, retailers are beginning to offer significant discounts off of their products in an attempt to lure shoppers into stores. Walmart has kicked off an ongoing discount on the iPhone 6 and 6 Plus, and MacMall is selling a high-end Retina MacBook Pro for an ultra low price.

We've also got deals on the iPad Air 2, iPad mini 3, and discounts on several Apple accessories in this week's Buyer's Guide deals post.

iPhone


Walmart kicked off some new $50 off deals on the iPhone 6 and 6 Plus today, which will last through February. A two-year contract is required to get the discounted price, and Walmart also offers a trade-in program to drop the pricing even lower. Deals are available in-store only.

Walmart is selling the 16GB iPhone 6 for $129, down from the previous $179 price tag, and it's also offering the 16GB iPhone 6 Plus for $229, down from $279.

iphone_6_plus_6_side_by
The iPhone 5s is on sale at Walmart as well, now available for $49 instead of $79.

Retina MacBook Pro


MacMall is taking pre-orders for the 2013 2.6GHz/16GB/1TB Retina MacBook Pro priced at $2,599.99, down from the regular price of $3,199, a $600 discount. Several 2014 Retina MacBook Pro models are also discounted at various retailers, as seen below:

- 13-inch 2.6GHz/8GB/256GB (Adorama) (B&H Photo) - $1,399, $100 off
- 13-inch 2.8GHz/8GB/512GB (Best Buy) (B&H Photo) - $1,599, $200 off
- 15-inch 2.2GHz/16GB/256GB (Adorama) (B&H Photo) - $1,699, $200 off
- 15-inch 2.5GHz/16GB/512GB (Adorama) (B&H Photo) - $2,199, $300 off

macbook_pro_13_15_late_2013

Mac Pro


- 6-core 3.5GHz/16GB/256GB (B&H) (Adorama) - $3,499, $500 off

iMac


- 21.5-inch 2.9GHz/8GB/1TB (Adorama) - $1349, $150 off
- 27-inch 3.2GHz/8GB/1TB (Adorama) (B&H) - $1,649.99, $150 off
- 27-inch 2.4GHz/8GB/1TB (Adorama) (B&H) - $1,799.99, $200 off

imac_yosemite_roundup_header

MacBook Air


- 11.6-inch 1.4GHz/4GB/128GB (Best Buy) (B&H Photo) (MacMall) - $799, $100 off
- 11.6-inch 1.4GHz/4GB/256GB (B&H Photo) (Adorama) - $999, $100 off
- 13.3-inch 1.4Ghz/4GB/128GB (Best Buy) - $899, $100 off

macbook_air_yosemite_roundup

iPad Air 2


Best Buy is offering $50 off its entire selection of iPad Air 2 models, including both Wi-Fi and Cellular in all colors and capacities. The prices aren't quite as good as the deals the company offered on Black Friday, but the pricing is better than Apple's.

ipadair2c
With the price drop, the entry-level 16GB Wi-Fi only iPad Air 2 is available for $449.99 instead of $499, and the entry-level cellular model is available for $579.99 instead of $629.

iPad mini 3


Best Buy is also offering $50 to $100 off its entire stock of iPad mini 3 models, offering deals that are nearly as good as the discounts the retailer offered on Black Friday.

ipadmini3
The entry-level Wi-Fi only 16GB iPad mini 3 is available for $349.99 instead of $399, and the deals are even better on the higher-capacity models. The 128GB Wi-Fi only iPad mini 3, for example, is available for $499 instead of $599.

Original iPad Air


Best Buy is offering modest discounts of $30 to $60 off some remaining higher-capacity original iPad Air models, dropping the prices below similar iPad Air 2 models.

- iPad Air Cellular Silver 64GB (AT&T) - $597.99
- iPad Air Cellular Space Gray 64GB (AT&T) - $597.99
- iPad Air Cellular Silver 64GB (Verizon) - $597.99
- iPad Air Cellular Space Gray 64GB (Verizon) - $566.99
- iPad Air Cellular Silver 128GB (AT&T) - $787.99
- iPad Air Cellular Space Gray 128GB (AT&T) - $787.99
- iPad Air Cellular Silver 128GB (Verizon) - $787.99
- iPad Air Cellular Space Gray 128GB (Verizon) - $787.99

iPad mini 2


Best Buy is also offering discounts of $30 to $60 off some remaining higher-capacity iPad mini 2 models, dropping the prices below similar iPad mini 3 models. The iPad mini 2 can be a particularly good deal compared to the iPad mini 3, as the only difference is Touch ID.

- iPad mini 2 WiFi-only Silver 64GB - $395.99
- iPad mini 2 WiFi-only Space Gray 64GB - $395.99
- iPad mini 2 WiFi-only Silver 128GB - $494.99
- iPad mini 2 WiFi-only Space Gray 128GB - $494.99

- iPad mini 2 Cellular AT&T Silver 64GB - $476.99
- iPad mini 2 Cellular AT&T Space Gray 64GB - $502.99
- iPad mini 2 Cellular Verizon Silver 64GB - $476.99
- iPad mini 2 Cellular Verizon Space Gray 64GB - $502.99
- iPad mini 2 Cellular AT&T Space Gray 128GB - $629.99
- iPad mini 2 Cellular Verizon Silver 128GB - $629.99
- iPad mini 2 Cellular Verizon Space Gray 128GB - $597.99

Apple Accessories


PayPal Digital Gifts on eBay is selling a $100 iTunes card for $80 for a limited time.

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The Spigen iPhone 6 CS Slim Armor Bundle is available for $34.99 (down from $85) from StackSocial. A refurbished 4,000mAh Mophie portable battery charger is available from groupon for $29.99, down from $79.95.

spigen
Best Buy is selling the Pebble Smart Watch for $79.99, $20 off its standard $99 price. Best Buy is also selling the AirPlay iHome Speaker System for $99.99, $200 off its regular $299 price. Select Beats headphones purchases at Best Buy totaling $398 or more are eligible for a $50 Best Buy gift card.

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Beats by Dre Pro Over-Ear headphones are available for $299 from Groupon, down from $399. Groupon is also selling Printerpix custom cases for iPhone 5s/6/6 Plus for $7.99, down from the $19.99 to $29.99 regular price.

MacRumors is an affiliate partner with some of these vendors.

Apple Seeds OS X Yosemite 10.10.2 Build 14C81f to Developers

Apple today seeded the third beta of OS X 10.10.2 Yosemite to developers, just over two weeks after seeing the second 10.10.2 beta and over a month after releasing OS X 10.10.1 to the public.

The new beta, build 14C81f, is available through the Software Update mechanism in the Mac App Store and through the Mac Dev Center.

14c81f
Like OS X 10.10.1, as a minor update, OS X 10.10.2 is likely to bring bug fixes and performance improvements to the operating system. OS X 10.10.1 introduced several reliability enhancements, including improvements to Wi-Fi, but many users have still been reporting issues with Wi-Fi stability in Yosemite.

In the release notes for the third 10.10.2 beta, Apple asks developers to focus on Wi-Fi, indicating the update may fix some of the lingering Wi-Fi problems. Apple also asks developers to focus on Mail and VoiceOver.

Working Apple-1 Computer Sold by Steve Jobs Fetches $365,000 at Auction

A rare fully functional Apple-1 Personal Computer sold for $365,000 at an auction in New York today, reports Reuters. The computer, which Steve Jobs originally sold out of his parents' garage in 1976 for $600, was expected to sell for much more, with initial estimates placing its value at $400,000 to $600,000.

In 1999, the machine auctioned off today was purchased by Bruce Waldack, an entrepreneur who had funds after selling his company, DigitalNation. Following his death in 2007, the Apple-1 went on to be auctioned at a storage facility in Virginia, where Robert Luther purchased it, along with the original buyer's canceled check from 1976.

ricketts_apple_1
The Apple-1 was sold alongside that canceled check, which was made out to Apple Computer from Charles Ricketts, who labeled it "Purchased July 1976 from Steve Jobs in his parents' garage in Los Altos." A second accompanying check for $193 was labeled "Software NA Programmed by Steve Jobs August 1976."

An expert tested the Apple-1 to ensure that it was fully operational and able to run the standard original software program, Microsoft BASIC, along with an original Apple-1 Star Trek game.

Other working Apple-1 computers have sold for far more in the past. Recently, the Henry Ford Museum paid $905,000 for an original Apple-1, and in 2013, an auction that included a working Apple-1 and a letter written by Steve Jobs went for $671,400. Less than 50 Apple-1 computers are believed to be in existence today, of the few hundred that were originally constructed by Steve Jobs and Steve Wozniak.

OWC Announces First 1TB and 2TB SSD Upgrades for 2013 Mac Pro

Other World Computing (OWC) today announced new 1TB and 2TB Aura SSD upgrades designed for the Mac Pro, offering Mac Pro owners a way to upgrade the storage in their machines without needing to purchase upgrades directly from Apple.

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Apple's 1TB upgrade option costs $800 over the base 256GB SSD option, and while OWC's 1TB upgrade option is priced slightly higher at $899, it gives users an option to convert their existing SSD into an external USB 3.0 drive.

Apple offers a maximum of 1TB of storage, so OWC's 2TB solution, priced at $1,479, is a good solution for users who are looking for additional storage for their Mac Pros. The 2TB option also comes with a kit for converting an existing SSD into an external USB 3.0 drive.

The kits, which are available for pre-order, come equipped with the tools needed for a do-it-yourself storage upgrade, a step-by-step installation video, and tech support provided by OWC. The kits are expected to ship in two to three weeks.

Average Mac User Faced Nine Malware Threats Last Year, but OS X Remains Minor Target

Apple's OS X faced an increasing number of malicious attacks in the past year with antivirus firm Kaspersky Lab noting roughly 3.7 million infection attempts blocked by its software, the firm reports in its 2014 Security Bulletin (via The Telegraph). The annual report quantifies malicious activity by analyzing attacks blocked by Kaspersky's anti-malware products.

According to the 2014 report, the average Mac user faced nine threats in the past year. The study tracked nearly 1500 new malware programs targeting OS X over the past year, 200 more than in the previous year. More than half of the detected malicious threats were AdWare modules that add links to default browser bookmark lists, change the default browser search engine, and insert advertising links in order to generate ad revenue.

osx-threats
Other more serious but less prevalent threats include a Trojan keylogger, a screenshot capture program, and the Wirelurker malware that attempts to steal data from iOS devices connected to a Mac. Though increasing, the number of malicious programs on OS X is lower than what is recorded on competing platforms such as Windows. Overall, Kaspersky Lab says its software blocked over six billion malware installation attempts over the past year, meaning that OS X remains a tiny fraction of devices being targeted.

As an antivirus vendor, Kaspersky Lab naturally has a vested interest in convincing customers to adopt its products, but it also puts the company in a good position to monitor threats and collect data from those using its tools.