Apple unveiled several new products during its first media event of the year today. As expected, the company refreshed its iPhone SE, the most affordable model in the iPhone family with a newer chip complete with 5G connectivity.
The 2022 iPhone SE keeps the same design introduced with the iPhone 8 but adds an A15 Bionic chip under the hood. This is the same chip that powers the iPhone 13, and it will bring better performance and battery life to the iPhone SE. In addition to 5G support, other notable updates include new color options and the inclusion of more durable glass on both the front and the back of the device.
Apple also unveiled today a new iPad Air that uses the same M1 chip previously seen on the iPad Pro and Apple Silicon Macs. This new iPad Air also comes with a 12MP ultra-wide camera on the front with Center Stage, a feature that automatically pans the camera to keep users in view as they move around. There’s also a new USB-C port that supports up to 2x faster data transfer speeds, and 5G cellular connectivity is available as an option.
The highlight of Apple’s event was definitely the company’s new Mac Studio, which will be available with an M1 Max chip or the brand new M1 Ultra variant. This new M1 Ultra chip uses a new die-to-die “UltraFusion” interconnect technology to connect two M1 Max chips together to deliver even more performance. Apple pointed out that macOS will still see the M1 Ultra as a single chip, which means that app developers won’t need to do any extra work to support a new architecture.
“M1 Ultra can be configured with up to 128GB of high-bandwidth, low-latency unified memory that can be accessed by the 20-core CPU, 64-core GPU, and 32-core Neural Engine, providing astonishing performance for developers compiling code, artists working in huge 3D environments that were previously impossible to render, and video professionals who can transcode video to ProRes up to 5.6x faster than with a 28-core Mac Pro with Afterburner,” Apple explained today.
The new Mac Studio has been designed for Mac users looking for a compact and powerful workstation. The new desktop looks like a bigger and taller Mac Mini, and it has two USB-C ports on the front and an SD card port. On the back, there are four Thunderbolt 4 ports, one Ethernet port, two USB-A ports, one HDMI port, and a pro audio jack.
The Mac Studio can provide up to 128GB of unified memory on systems with an M1 Ultra, and the SSD delivers up to 7.4GB/s speeds and a capacity of up to 8TB. “Every element inside Mac Studio was designed to optimize the performance of M1 Max and M1 Ultra, producing an unprecedented amount of power and capability in a form factor that can live right on a desk,” Apple said today.
To complement the new Mac Studio, Apple also unveiled an all-new Studio Display today. It comes with a 27-inch 5K Retina display With 600 nits of brightness, P3 wide color, and True Tone support. The built-in stand can tilt the display up to 30 degrees, but there’s also tilt- and height-adjustable stand option as well as a VESA adapter mount option.
Apple’s new Studio Display comes with an A13 Bionic chip inside to control the 12MP ultra-wide camera that supports the aforementioned Center Stage feature. Additionally, the Studio Display features studio-quality mics and a high-fidelity six-speaker sound system that supports Dolby Atmos for music and videos.
Here are the pricing details for Apple’s new products, which will all start shipping on March 18:
- iPhone SE: $429 for the 64GB model, up to $579 for the 256GB version
- iPad Air: $599 for the 64GB model, up to $749 for the 256GB model with 5G
- Mac Studio: The M1 Max model starts at $1,999, and the M1 Ultra model starts at $3,999.
Apple did mention at the end of today’s event that the Mac Pro family will also get its Apple Silicon refresh soon, and it will be interesting to see if Apple has an even more powerful chip than the M1 Ultra in the pipeline. The company is also expected to release new MacBook models later this year, including a redesigned MacBook Air that could be the first Mac to come with a new M2 chip.