What the Apple WWDC Announcements Mean to You

Apple has a habit of making so many product announcements on one day that it’s hard to keep track of them all. Don’t worry, though — here’s a brief guide to help you out. For companies that offer online videos, here are your top questions answered.

Did I Hear Something about Final Cut Pro X Being Updated?
Yes, but it’s not a feature update. Apple released minor updates today to Final Cut Pro X and Motion (its motion graphics application), as well as iTunes Aperture, and iPhoto. While the updates offered minor bug fixes, the main purpose was to support the Retina Display in a new version of the MacBook Pro.

What Is “Retina Display” and Why Does it Require Special Software?
“Retina Display” is a marketing name for the high-pixel density screens in new iPhones, iPod Touches, iPads, iPod Nanos, and now MacBook Pros. The Retina Display MacBook Pro model released today has a resolution of 2880 by 1800 pixels. The name “Retina Display” means that at a distance of 10-inches, the human eye won’t be able to detect individual pixels. Software needs to be specially written to take advantage of this high-resolution screen. Having Final Cut Pro X optimized for Retina Display means editors will be able to see images in the Viewer at 1080p, without the need to go full screen.

Do all the New MacBooks Offer Retina Display?
No, only one of them. Apple freshened up the MacBook Air line (there are two 11-inch models and two 13-inch models) and also freshened up the MacBook Pro line (there are two 13-inch models, two 15-inch models, and two 15-inch Retina Display models). Only those last two 15-inch MacBook Pros have Retina Display. They start at $2,199, by the way. Retina Display is a pricey extra.

There’s a New Operating System Coming Out?
Yes, Apple announced that the next version of Mac OS X, version 10.8 (more often called Mountain Lion), will be available next month. Sticking with its history of low-cost updates, 10.8 will cost $19.99. It will work on systems running OS X 10.6.8 or later, have 2GB of RAM, and 8GB of free space. You can find the full specs here to see if your Mac is supported. Highlights of 10.8 include the new Messages application, Notification Center (showing all notifications in one place), Facebook support built into many apps, Dictation, and the new Gatekeeper security application.

The Mobile Operating System Is Being Updated too, Right?
Yes, iOS 6 will come out sometime in the fall. Apple previewed it today, showing the impressive new Maps app with turn-by-turn directions, Siri on the iPad, Facebook integration, and new Passbook app (it collects movie, airplane, and other types of passes in one place, and can do other tricks, like automatically displaying your loyalty card when you enter a store).

Any News about the Next iPhone?
Nope. Not a peep.


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