The Apple Store went down just before Apple's WWDC keynote began earlier this morning, but it is now back online with new hardware updates for the refreshed AirPort Extreme, AirPort Time Capsule and MacBook Airs.
Phil Schiller, Apple's senior vice-president of worldwide marketing, announced the new AirPort Base Stations, including a new AirPort Extreme Base Station router and a new Time Capsule, with updated designs and better internal specs.
The AirPort Extreme is a residential gateway product that combines the functions of a router, network switch, Wi-Fi base station, network-attached storage and more, while the Time Capsule is just a wireless network device featuring network-attached storage, a residential gateway router and a built-in hard drive.
The biggest improvement to the Base Stations is support for the new 802.11ac Wi-Fi standard, which provides 40 per cent faster data transmissions than previous models, and "beamforming" antenna configuration for enhanced performance and improved Wi-Fi coverage.
The updated AirPort Extreme Base Station and Time Capsule also feature the same "top-down approach" for design. Apple ditched the old square shape and opted for a rectangular shape that allows both devices to stand 6.6 inches tall and 3.85 inches wide. The result cuts the devices' footprint by 75 percent.
The all-new Extreme Base Station and Time Capsule both feature Gigabit Ethernet capability, three LAN ports, one WAN port, and one USB 2.0 port for peripherals. The AirPort Time Capsule, which has similar specs as the Extreme, uniquely offers a built-in hard drive in either 2TB or 3TB configurations.
As for the MacBook Air, Apple introduced new 11-inch and 13-inch models with Haswell processors that enhance performance and improve battery life. The 11-inch MacBook Air will specifically have a 9-hour battery life, while the 13-inch MacBook Air will sport 12 hours of battery life.
In addition to Haswell processors, the new MacBooks boast 802.11ac compatibility and support for Gigabit Wi-Fi 802.11ac
Pricing and Availability
The AirPort Extreme Base Station costs $199 (£128), and the Time Capsules is available in 2TB and 3TB variations at $299 and $399, respectively. The 11-inch MacBook Air starts at $999 with a 128GB hard drive, and the 13-inch MacBook Air with a 128GB hard drive starts at $1,099.
All of Apple's new products are available to buy from the Apple Store today.
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