Apple has released information detailing that both the new models of their iMac range will be available to purchase in the UK before the New Year. The 21.5 inch model should be available from the 30th November while its bigger brother equipped with a 27 inch screen should be available to purchase during December.
This news seems to contradict claims that Apple would be unable to ship the new iMacs before 2013 due to complications in the manufacturing process. These claims were based on reported difficulties Apple was having with the welding process required to construct the new impossibly slim profiles. The reduced edges rendered previous techniques unsuitable and therefore an advanced welding technique known as ‘friction welding’ had to be used.
The thin profile of the new iMacs also means that there is no room to include an optical drive in the build. Apple made the same move in its first release of the Macbook Air in 2008 which then attracted strong criticism but now public opinion seems to view optical drives as less of a necessity as it once did.
While much of the coverage of Apple’s 2012 Keynote focussed on the launch of the new iPad Mini and iPod Nano models, the new range of iMacs had equally impressive specifications and improvements. The new iMacs feature faster Intel quad-core processors and boast Nvidia GeForce graphics cards that Apple claim improve performance of the previous models of iMacs by 60%. Apple has also redesigned the iMac’s iconic glossy displays which they claim to be 75% less reflective.
Despite the confirmation that Apple will make its launch deadlines, there are still concerns that supply will outstrip demand. This was outlined by CEO, Tim Cook, at the latest earnings call:
“On the iMac we’ll be constrained for the full quarter in a significant way… there will be a short amount of time to manufacturer and ramp those and I expect demand to be robust… we will have a significant shortage.”