Apple unveils new Mac software, 2 new Macbook Airs
Nicknamed 'Lion,' the newest Mac software includes an improved 'iLife' multimedia suite and incorporates FaceTime video chat.
Wed, Oct 20, 2010 at 02:25 PM
WHAT’S NEW: Apple CEO Steve Jobs talks about the new iLife at Apple headquarters in Cupertino, Calif., Wednesday, Oct. 20. (Photo: Tony Avelar/AP)
CUPERTINO, California - Apple Inc CEO Steve Jobs has unveiled Mac software that lets users video-chat and buy from its huge online applications store, hoping to accelerate market share gains against Microsoft Corp's Windows-based PCs.
Nicknamed "Lion," the newest Mac software includes an improved "iLife" multimedia suite and incorporates FaceTime video chat which the company recently launched on the iPhone. Apple provided a sneak peek at the software on Wednesday.
Apple is also launching two new MacBook Air ultralight laptops.
One has a screen that's 13.3 inches diagonally. The second has an 11.6-inch screen. Prices start at $999.
Like the past generation, the MacBook Air can't read CDs or DVDs. This one also doesn't have a hard disk drive. Instead, it uses all flash memory, like the iPhone does.
In the quarter that just ended, Mac revenue was $4.9 billion, less than a quarter of Apple's overall revenue.
But while much of the consumer and investor attention is focused on the iPhone and iPad, the Mac has been critical to the company's success over the past few years. Apple sold 13.6 million of its personal computers in fiscal 2010 ended September, up more than 30 percent and far outpacing the overall market.
In the third calendar quarter, Apple became the No. 3 personal computer maker in the United States with a 10.6 percent market share, according to IDC. Its global market share is less than 5 percent, and the company is aiming to increase sales outside its U.S. stronghold.
Apple shares rose 0.9 percent to $312.32 at mid-afternoon on Nasdaq.
Investors have wondered whether the iPad, a 10-inch touchscreen tablet that began selling in April starting at $499 and runs on the same operating system as the iPhone, would cannibalize sales of the Mac, as it has done for lower-end laptops.
But Apple Chief Financial Officer Peter Oppenheimer dismissed those concerns during an interview on Monday.
(Reporting by Gabriel Madway; Editing by Robert MacMillan and Richard Chang)
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