Apple Event News Recap: A $10,000+ Watch, Super-Thin MacBook, And HBO Now Exclusive Deal Revealed Today
Apple's live event just came to a close after an hour and a half of news and reveals, and there's plenty to pore over in the aftermath.
As expected, the Apple Watch was the big attention-grabbing item of the day, though it took some time to get around to it. Three models were revealed, and as we knew the base Watch Sport starts at $349.99, with upgraded versions available for up to $399.99.
The mid-range model--simply, Watch--begins at $549.99 and goes up to $1,099.99 for the most expensive 42mm Space Black with stainless steel model. Finally, there's the incredibly high-end Watch Edition, which starts at a cool $10,000. It includes real gold, and is quite obviously out of the price range of all but an extremely wealthy minority of buyers--this is probably the celebrity watch we'll be seeing.
The fact that it comes with a rubber band at $10,000 is incredibly silly, and you have to go all the way up to the $15,000 version to escape the sport band. Yes, those spending $10,000 on a watch aren't exactly searching for top value, but a cheap rubber band shouldn't be anywhere near the luxury model. Regardless, those are your three versions of the Apple Watch, and they will all be available for pre-order on April 10.
The new MacBook, which was revealed prior to the watch, is a super thin and light model that does away with traditional internal design to achieve a new form factor. Weighing only 2lbs and coming in at 13.1mm, the 12-inch laptop will be priced at $1,299, with an upgraded $1,599 model available as well. Apple claimed to have "reinvented the notebook" before revealing the product, and those lofty claims do appear a bit exaggerated--though the rose gold color is certainly snazzy.
It is impressively thin and light, but had to sacrifice traditional ports and other features to reach that point--there are no USB or HDMI ports, but a new proprietary USB-C port that can handle all input types.
Here are the specs for the $1,299 model, with the upgradeable options for the $1,599 model in brackets:
- 12-inch Retina display, 2304 by 1440 pixels
- 1.1Ghz Dual-core Intel Core M processor [Up to 1.2 and 1.3Ghz]
- 9 hour battery life
- 256 GB flash storage [Up to 512 GB]
- 8 GB RAM
- Intel HD Graphics 5300
- Full-size backlit keyboard with butterfly mechanism
Apple also announced an exclusive deal with HBO: the standalone service HBO Now (HBO GO without the need for a cable subscription) will launch as an Apple exclusive. The service won't be available to cable providers for a three month window, so Apple TV will be the way to go. Conveniently, a price drop was then announced for the streaming device--it now costs $69.99, down from $99.99. A brand new trailer for Game of Thrones' upcoming season was also shown, which you can watch here.