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February 10, 2014 - Dave Hecei
Here we are well into the beginning of February and yet there is no updated Mac mini to been seen. Over the past year, all of the other Macintoshes in Apple’s lineup have been updated. Even the Mac Pro, which hadn’t really changed since 2010, finally got an update. The mini now stands alone – old and hopefully not abandoned.
Only Apple really knows what is going on with the mini. It was originally released in January of 2005. This amazingly tiny Mac started out as an inexpensive G4 desktop designed to entice frustrated Windows PC owners over to the Mac. The original design was a small 6.5-inch square box only 2-inches high and priced at $499. It sold as just the computer with no keyboard or mouse. The idea what to get ‘switchers’ who already had a Windows PC since they already had a monitor, keyboard and mouse. It was also the lowest priced Mac ever so it also appealed to new and old Apple customers.
In February of 2006, Apple updated the mini with Intel processors. It was available with either a single-core or dual-core Intel processor. In 2010 the mini got a complete facelift matching the unibody styling of the MacBooks. The mini’s body was machined from a solid block of aluminum measuring 7.7 by 7.7 inches and only 1.4-inches tall. This slight increase in body size allowed Apple to place the power supply for the mini internally. This meant no more huge power brick to deal with.
The only other changes to the mini, since 2010, have been the loss of the optical drive and slightly faster processors. The USB ports are now based on the much faster USB 3.0, but all the other ports haven’t really changed. The only problem is if Apple were to just put the not-so-new-now Haswell processors in a new mini, why haven’t they done that already? This could mean that they are waiting for some other new technology to come down the pipe, or maybe Apple is actually redesigning the mini from the ground up. Could it be possible that Apple is about to try a new radical design like they did with the Mac Pro?
All good questions, I suppose since Apple is really trying hard to look and be innovative. This could translate into a new Mac mini design. The only problem is when will it happen.
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