Notes of Interest on OS X Lion, MacBook Air, Mac Mini, and Display Announcements

With a flurry of new hardware releases appearing alongside OS X Lion today, here are a few notes of interest that we wanted to make sure our readers noticed:

OS X Lion

- While Apple initially touted OS X Lion as being a Mac App Store exclusive, the company announced today that the new operating system will also be made available on a USB thumb drive beginning next month. The thumb drive option will be priced at $69, compared to $29.99 for Mac App Store distribution.

- Beginning with the MacBook Air and Mac mini released today, new Apple hardware will support Internet Recovery, allowing users to install OS X Lion onto blank hard drives in the event of hard drive replacement due to failure or upgrades.

Mac mini

- The updated Mac mini omits an optical drive, joining the MacBook Air in Apple's efforts to slim down its hardware and push digital software distribution. Users requiring optical disc capabilities for their new Mac minis can either use Remote Disc capabilities to wirelessly use the optical drive of another computer or purchase an external SuperDrive.

- The new Mac mini offers discrete graphics on the high-end model, utilizing the AMD Radeon HD 6630M and offering up to twice the graphics performance of the previous generation. The low-end and server Mac mini models utilize integrated graphics in the form of Intel HD Graphics 3000.

- Pricing for the Mac mini returns to $599 for the low-end model after having been bumped up to $699 with the redesign on the previous generation.

macbook air mac mini store
MacBook Air

- As had been rumored, the updated MacBook Air sees the return of the backlit keyboard. The feature had been present in the original MacBook Air, but was not included in the initial redesigned form factor released last October.

- Both the new Mac mini and MacBook Air support Bluetooth 4.0, a new specification that offers ultra low-power data transfer and has been touted as opening the door to a host of new wireless peripheral devices.

Apple Thunderbolt Display

- Apple's forthcoming Thunderbolt display, shipping within the next 60 days, is being positioned as an "ultimate docking station". The display uses a single Thunderbolt connection to support FaceTime camera, audio, USB, Firewire 800 and Ethernet through the display.

MacBook

- Apple's white polycarbonate MacBook has been discontinued for general purchase and is now only available to educational institutions.

Top Rated Comments

gohanmzt Avatar
150 months ago
<The thumb drive option will be priced at $69?

$40 for a 4GB thumb drive?

It's not an ordinary thumb drive. It will have an apple logo on it.
Score: 9 Votes (Like | Disagree)
kas23 Avatar
150 months ago
$29 - Lion
$10 - 4G thumb drive
$0.30 - 12 year-old Chinese girl loading Lion onto the drive (~1 hr)
$29.10 - Apple tax

Fixed that for you. :)
Score: 8 Votes (Like | Disagree)
shurcooL Avatar
150 months ago
Am I the only one who hates Apple are their forcing ways. Removing Optical drives when MANY still use DVDs. I use my laptop for DVD playback all the time, buying a DVD feels much nicer than using iTunes.
I hate when people say Apple is forcing something on them. If people are still using CDs, either use older Apple hardware that has them built in, or buy an external drive.

Apple is not coming to your house and taking your CD-drive away.

They are free to do as they please with the new product releases.

Same for CD installs, what happens when you don't have Internet. Rip-off selling it for a stupid price.
Buy the USB stick for $70, or burn a Lion DVD after downloading Lion once.

Windows 8 has higher hopes in my books now, for one it'll very likely be CD and USB installed (For tablets needing USB) and it does not force anything upon you.
Okay.
Score: 7 Votes (Like | Disagree)
AidenShaw Avatar
150 months ago
Apple's white polycarbonate MacBook has been discontinued

thanks god! for that! (what a ugly white mac...) :D

Since Apple killed the tacky white plastic laptop, do the new systems still come with tacky white plastic power bricks and cables?

Never understood selling a machined aluminum laptop with tacky white plastic accessories.
Score: 6 Votes (Like | Disagree)
JS77 Avatar
150 months ago
By the way, the MR Buyers Guide still shows "Don't Buy - Updates Soon!" for the Macbook :o
Score: 6 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Scarrus Avatar
150 months ago
<The thumb drive option will be priced at $69?

$40 for a 4GB thumb drive?
The Chruch speaks the word of god and thus those who will not obey to God's words "Buy from the App Store!" shall be punished with a 40$ fee!


lol
Score: 5 Votes (Like | Disagree)

Popular Stories

iPhone trade in

Apple Adjusts Trade-In Values for iPhones, Macs, and More

Wednesday January 25, 2023 9:40 am PST by
After announcing new Mac and HomePod models last week, Apple adjusted its trade-in values for select devices in the United States. iPhone trade-in values decreased by up to $80, and most Android smartphones also went down. Mac trade-in values remained unchanged or increased by up to $40 depending on the model, while some Apple Watch models increased in value and others decreased. Trade-in...
iPhone 14 Pro Purple Side Perspective Feature Purple

iPhone 15 Pro Expected Later This Year With These 7 Exclusive Features

Tuesday January 24, 2023 4:53 pm PST by
Apple's next-generation iPhone 15 Pro and iPhone 15 Pro Max are expected to be announced in September as usual. Already, rumors suggest the devices will have at least seven exclusive features not available on the standard iPhone 15 and iPhone 15 Plus. An overview of the seven features rumored to be exclusive to iPhone 15 Pro models:A17 chip: iPhone 15 Pro models will be equipped with an A17...
Mac mini M2 2023

New 256GB Mac Mini and 512GB MacBook Pro Have Slower SSD Speeds Than Previous Models

Tuesday January 24, 2023 1:11 pm PST by
While the new Mac mini with the M2 chip has a lower $599 starting price, the base model with 256GB of storage has slower SSD read and write speeds compared to the previous-generation model with the M1 chip and 256GB of storage. A teardown of the new Mac mini shared by YouTube channel Brandon Geekabit reveals that the 256GB model is equipped with only a single 256GB storage chip, while the...
iOS 16

iOS 16.3 for iPhone Launching Next Week With These 4 New Features

Friday January 20, 2023 11:43 am PST by
In a recent press release, Apple confirmed that iOS 16.3 will be released to the public next week. The software update will be available for the iPhone 8 and newer and includes a handful of new features, changes, and bug fixes. Below, we've recapped bigger features in iOS 16.3, including support for physical security keys as a two-factor authentication option for Apple ID accounts, worldwide ...
iPhone 14 Pro Purple Side Perspective Feature Purple

iPhone 15 Expected to Feature Wi-Fi 6E Like Latest Macs and iPad Pro

Wednesday January 25, 2023 5:39 pm PST by
The iPhone 15 will support Wi-Fi 6E, according to a research note shared this week by Barclays analysts Blayne Curtis and Tom O'Malley. The analysts did not specify whether the feature will be available on all models or limited to the Pro models. Apple has added Wi-Fi 6E support to a handful of devices so far, including the latest 11-inch and 12.9-inch iPad Pro, 14-inch and 16-inch MacBook...
maxresdefault

Hands-On With the New M2 Pro Mac Mini

Tuesday January 24, 2023 1:45 pm PST by
The new M2-series MacBook Pro and Mac mini models launched today, marking the debut of the first M2 Pro and M2 Max chips. We have the M2 Pro Mac mini on hand, and thought we'd take a look at the machine and do a series of benchmarks to see how it fits into Apple's lineup. Subscribe to the MacRumors YouTube channel for more videos. Base model Mac mini machines come with either an M2 or M2 Pro...
apple tv 4k red image

Apple Releases tvOS 16.3

Tuesday January 24, 2023 10:10 am PST by
Apple today released tvOS 16.3, the third major point update to the tvOS 16 operating system that originally came out in September. Available for the Apple TV 4K and Apple TV HD, tvOS 16.3 comes six weeks after tvOS 16.2, an update that added Apple Music Sing. The tvOS 16.3 update can be downloaded over the air through the Settings app on the ‌‌‌‌Apple TV‌‌‌‌ by going to System > Software...
maxresdefault

Hands-On With the New M2 Max MacBook Pro

Thursday January 26, 2023 12:14 pm PST by
New 14-inch and 16-inch MacBook Pro models with the latest M2 Pro and M2 Max chips are available in Apple retail stores and are already in the hands of customers, and we picked up one of the new M2 Max machines to answer all of the questions MacRumors readers considering a purchase might have. Subscribe to the MacRumors YouTube channel for more videos. Yesterday, we asked MacRumors fans on...