MacBook Pro gets faster processor, better graphics

MacBook Pro gets update from Apple as competition for MacBook Pro heats up from Dell and others.

By , VentureBeat

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    A MacBook Pro displays the homepage of Apple.com after the passing of former Apple CEO Steve Jobs earlier this month. On Monday, Apple updated the MacBook Pro with a faster processor and better graphics capabilities.
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Apple‘s MacBook Pro laptop line received a small upgrade today in speed and storage, although it hasn’t gotten much attention given all the iPhone 4S release excitement.

Apple has continued to keep its laptops in fighting form with updates to its processing speed and graphics capabilities. These updates become increasingly important as competitors such as Dell’s XPS 14z try to take the computer on in form factor and speed.

We reported on rumors of a new MacBook Pro upgrade a couple of weeks ago. The new 13-inch Pros now sport 2.4 GHz Intel core i5 processors with 500 GB of hard drive and can tap out at 2.8 GHz i7 processors with 750 GB of hard drive. The 15 and 17-inch Pros have been upgraded from the 2.0 GHz processor to a 2.5 Ghz quad-core i7.

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In terms of graphics, the 15-inch now runs on a Radeon HD 6750M and goes up to a 6770M, comparable to the 6490M to 6750M in the previous iteration. The 17-inch Pro saw an upgrade to the Radeon HD 6770M graphics card as well. 13-inch MacBook Pros have not yet received the Radeon graphics integration and remain running on the Intel HD Graphics 3000.

Like the iPhone 4S release, the body of these MacBook Pros remains the same, although the guts have changed. Pricing also remains the same. The computers also do not support Bluetooth 4.0 yet, though it’s been rumored the integration is pending given the iPhone and MacBook Air now both support the device.

The latest upgrades come pretty quickly on the heels previous upgrades to the MacBook Pro line in February, when the laptops were touched up with Intel’s then-new Sandy Bridge core i5 and i7 processors. In February, the computers also received new Thunderbolt ports, allowing them to make high speed data transfers and also making them compatible with HDMI and DVI cables. At that time, the 13-inch MacBook Pro received new dual core i5 and i7 processors, ranging from 2.3 GHz with 320 GB hard drive to 2.7 Ghz with 500 GB hard drive. The 15 and 17-inch computers rose to a quad-core i7, 2.0 GHz with 500 GB hard drive. The new Sandy Bridge quad-core technology is as energy-efficient as it is powerful, which allows the processors to run without sucking the battery life out of the MacBook Pros.

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