After a widespread positive response to the speed of its new in-house M1 processors in Macbooks, Apple is now expanding its use of these chips to the iMac and challenging PC rivals with a desktop computer built for the era of remote working.
Perhaps the most impressive part of the new iMac, unveiled on Tuesday, is that it’s only 11.5 millimetres thick. That’s even thinner than many monitors that don’t even have a computer built into them.
According to Apple, this is made possible by the move away from Intel processors and to rely on the M1 chips it is now developing in-house.
Among other things, this drastically saves space and instead of a large cooling system, the iMac only needs two small fans. Another advantage of the M1 chip is that it runs on the same technical platform as the iPhones, which makes it easier for apps to interact.
At a time when video conferencing is a daily routine, Apple also says it has also improved the iMac’s camera to allow for better video call quality, while the microphones are better at filtering out noises of other people near you.
Meanwhile the keyboard now has a fingerprint scanner for the first time – just like in the Macbook notebooks – making it easier to log in to websites and confirm your identity when paying online.
At 24 inches, the display is positioned between the previous smaller and larger models. The price of 1,300 dollars in the US is roughly comparable to what Apple was previously asking for an iMac.
The M1 chip will also be used in a new generation of the iPad Pro. At its Tuesday event, streamed online, Apple also presented the long-awaited AirTags – small keychains that can be attached to objects such as keys to find them quickly.
Apple already has the necessary infrastructure for this with an in-house location network connected to the Find My app. The communication for this is encrypted and anonymous, Apple says. “AirTag was designed to track items, not people.”
Until now, only Apple devices such as iPhones or AirPods earphones could be located via Find My. A few days ago, however, Apple opened up the network to other manufacturers – including a provider of electric bicycles.