Fresh benchmark statistics posted to the Web on Wednesday suggest Apple’s upcoming 12-inch MacBook laptop will perform at levels commensurate of older MacBook Air models from 2011.
According to Primate Labs’ Geekbench test suite, Apple’s base model 2015 12-inch MacBook, designated MacBook 8,1, achieved a single core score of 1,924 points, while multi core operations came in at 4,038 points.
Apparently submitted online by Mashable journalist Christina Warren, the performance notches just below a recently tested 2011 11-inch MacBook Air sporting an Intel Core i7 CPU clocked at 1.80 GHz.
The new MacBook runs a power efficient dual-core Intel Core M processor clocked at 1.1 GHz. Requiring only 5 watts of power, Intel’s mobile-minded Broadwell architecture sips energy at the expense of performance. Along with the 1.1 GHz chip, Apple is offering a 1.3 GHz version as a $300 add-on option.
For an ultralight laptop fitted with a high-resolution Retina display, however, raw processing power is not necessarily as important as squeezing out acceptable battery life. Apple says the MacBook’s 39.7-watt-hour battery can handle up to nine hours of Web browsing activities or up to ten hours of movie playback.
While Apple’s 12-inch MacBook is slated to hit store shelves on April 10, an unboxing video posted earlier today offered a first look at the hardware.
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Citi analyst Jim Suva believes investors and the Street are seriously underestimating Apple’s growth potential, especially related to iPhone 6 performance, saying he expects AAPL to beat consensus for March quarter sales by at least $1 billion.
Suva told investors in a note sent out Wednesday that his checks show rolling iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus sales outpacing analyst consensus for the upcoming fiscal quarter. With iPhone being a huge contributor to Apple’s overall revenue base, a Street misunderstanding of market trade winds could result in major beat.
Based on these factors, along with a few others, Suva put Apple shares on Citi’s US Focus List, a designation granted only to the “highest conviction stock ideas.” Explaining the decision, he outlines five key reasons why Apple should be trading higher: device acceleration; attractive valuation and currently low consensus estimates; increasing gross margins; Apple Pay and Passbook potential; and enterprise opportunities.
- Device Acceleration
Suva thinks device acceleration is a major underlying driver for Apple as cellular carriers are seemingly trending toward early iPhone upgrades in hopes of mitigating customer churn. For example, telcos run promotions that provide wireless subscribers opportunities to swap out their old devices for new units earlier on in a two-year contract.
- Valuation and consensus
Investors sometimes question if AAPL is too overpriced, but Suva argues the stock is currently trading at 14 times forward earnings or 11 times excluding cash of $25 per share. This is in comparison to the SP 500, which trades at 17 times forward earnings. Importantly, industry consensus on Apple earnings potential is conservatively low, suggesting upward adjustments could be in the offing.
- Gross margins trending up
With a bevy of content-rich apps and generational camera hardware upgrades that eat up more onboard storage, Apple is primed to see a shift in consumer preference to devices with higher memory capacities. Apple prices iPhone storage tiers (16GB, 64GB and 128GB) in $100 increments, but only pays about $20 for the extra modules, suggesting an 80 percent incremental gross margin. Further, Apple guidance for its second fiscal quarter of 2015 stands at 38.5 to 39.5 percent, compared to 37.5 to 38.5 percent in the trailing quarter.
- Apple Pay and Passbook
Apple Pay is currently limited to the U.S. market, but as it rolls out internationally, Suva expects Apple to make great strides in mobile payments. He notes Apple Pay is only part of Passbook, which itself could be a potential driver of future growth.
After capturing the consumer market with high quality products, Apple has a chance to parlay that success into enterprise. Citing Apple’s recent partnership with IBM, Suva sees Apple investing in business-minded products and services, possibly leading to a holistic enterprise mobile solution.
Suva offers one more “bonus” reason, noting Apple Watch is about to launch in late April. He predicts the first-generation device to sell about 7 million units over 2015, but estimates that number to increase to 20 million next year.
Citi reiterates a buy rating at a target price of $145 and is modeling second quarter revenue at $56.6 billion, a 24-percent increase year-over-year.
Apple is scheduled to report fiscal quarter two earnings on April 27.
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The Fine Print: the prices of the Macs themselves are subject to — and likely will — fluctuate on a daily basis due normal market conditions, and are therefore not guaranteed to last for any specific time period. Always check our Price Guides for the most current advertised price. Similarly, the APPLEINSIDER01 coupon code is a limited time offer that is subject to expire at any time. Buyers can shop with confidence, as MacMall will not charge a customer for their purchase until their MacBook is ready to ship out the door.
If you experience any issues, you can always reach out to us at firstname.lastname@example.org and we’ll do our best to help.
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MacBook Pro Price Guide Segment
2.5GHz 13″ (4GB/500GB HDD)
2.7GHz 13″ (8GB, 128GB)
2.7GHz 13″ (8GB, 256GB)
2.7GHz 13″ (16GB, 128GB)
2.7GHz 13″ (16GB, 256GB)
2.9GHz 13″ (8GB, 128GB)
2.9GHz 13″ (8GB, 256GB)
2.9GHz 13″ (8GB, 512GB)
2.9GHz 13″ (8GB, 1TB)
2.9GHz 13″ (16GB, 128GB)
2.9GHz 13″ (16GB, 256GB)
2.9GHz 13″ (16GB, 512GB)
2.9GHz 13″ (16GB, 1TB)
3.1GHz 13″ (8GB, 128GB)
3.1GHz 13″ (8GB, 256GB)
3.1GHz 13″ (8GB, 512GB)
3.1GHz 13″ (8GB, 1TB)
3.1GHz 13″ (16GB, 128GB)
3.1GHz 13″ (16GB, 256GB)
3.1GHz 13″ (16GB, 512GB)
3.1GHz 13″ (16GB, 1TB)
2.6GHz 13″ (8GB, 128GB)
2.6GHz 13″ (8GB, 256GB)
2.6GHz 13″ (16GB, 128GB)
2.6GHz 13″ (16GB, 256GB)
2.8GHz 13″ (8GB, 256GB)
2.8GHz 13″ (8GB, 512GB)
2.8GHz 13″ (16GB, 256GB)
2.8GHz 13″ (16GB, 512GB)
2.8GHz 13″ (16GB, 1TB)
3.0GHz 13″ (8GB, 128GB)
3.0GHz 13″ (8GB, 256GB)
3.0GHz 13″ (8GB, 512GB)
3.0GHz 13″ (8GB, 1TB)
3.0GHz 13″ (16GB, 128GB)
3.0GHz 13″ (16GB, 256GB)
3.0GHz 13″ (16GB, 512GB)
3.0GHz 13″ (16GB, 1TB)
2.4GHz 13″ (4GB,128GB)
2.4GHz 13″ (8GB, 256GB)
2.6GHz 13″ (8GB, 512GB)
2.2GHz 15″ (16GB, 256GB)
2.2GHz 15″ (16GB, 512GB)
2.2GHz 15″ (16GB, 1TB)
2.5GHz 15″ (16GB, 256GB)
2.5GHz 15″ (16GB, 512GB)
2.5GHz 15″ (16GB, 1TB)
2.5GHz 15″ (16GB, 512GB, 750M)
2.5GHz 15″ (16GB, 1TB, 750M)
2.8GHz 15″ (16GB, 256GB)
2.8GHz 15″ (16GB, 512GB)
2.8GHz 15″ (16GB, 512GB, 750M)
2.8GHz 15″ (16GB, 1TB)
2.8GHz 15″ (16GB, 1TB, 750M)
2.3GHz 15″ (16GB, 512GB, 750M)
2.6GHz 15″ (16GB, 1TB, 750M)
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Consumers looking for an early glimpse at the shipping version of Apple’s all-new 12-inch MacBook need wait no longer, as the Force Touch-packing ultraportable has found itself the subject of a pre-release unboxing video in Vietnam.
The nearly all-white packaging features a frontal glamour shot of the MacBook on the lid, with the name stamped in a familiar foil along the sides. Included in the box, according to Tinhte.vn, is the new 29-watt power brick, a 2-meter charging cable with USB type C connectors on each end, and Apple’s traditional informational packet.
The company appears to have eschewed the longer power cord that it includes with its other laptops, though the power brick does feature interchangeable plugs. Also gone are the flip-up winding posts that have long adorned Apple’s power bricks.
The charging cord itself appears somewhat thicker and stiffer than those attached to Apple’s MagSafe connectors. The UCB type C plugs look like larger versions of the Ligtning plugs, with extruded ovular casings.
Apple is expected to open sales of the new MacBook on April 10. Available in silver, gold, or space gray, pricing starts at $1,299.
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A new tax in the U.K. directly targets companies such as Apple, Amazon, and Google, which have been accused of shifting profits overseas to avoid paying taxes in countries where they nevertheless do business.
The Diverted Profits Tax — sometimes nicknamed the “Google Tax” — will see multinationals owe 25 percent on offshored profits, Sky News reported on Wednesday. That’s above the level of the U.K.’s Corporation Tax, which is today being reduced from 21 percent to 20 percent.
Google paid £11.6 million ($17.2 million) in local taxes during 2013, while Apple paid £11 million ($16.3 million), despite the U.K. being one of the world’s most lucrative markets. One of the worst offenders is thought to be Facebook, which paid out just £3,169 ($4,696), below what many households might owe.
Starbucks however paid no Corporation Tax at all between the years of 2009 and 2012, claiming that it had suffered a loss. The coffee vendor managed £400 million ($592.8 million) in 2011 sales alone.
One of the most common tax havens is Ireland, which until recently had a loophole known as the “Double Irish.” Apple specifically has funneled much of its non-US revenue through the country, and in 2014 paid only $1.1 billion in taxes on $30.5 billion in foreign earnings, or roughly 4 percent. That loophole should be closed by 2020, which will force companies like Apple and Google to either accept a higher tax obligation or find other havens.
Late last month, Italian prosecutors accused Apple of failing to pay over 879 million euros ($964 million) in corporate taxes, citing the company’s Irish tax scheme. The case could go to trial. Apple has denied any wrongdoing, claiming that allegations against some of its Italian and Irish staff are “without merit.”
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Twitter today released its first major TweetDeck for Mac update since August, bringing support for features like Teams and group messages, while Facebook launched Riff, an app for shooting and sharing collaborative videos.
TweetDeck for Mac upgrades with missing features
Twitter’s high-level desktop client has finally gained features already present in some of its other apps, including group messages and in-line playback of animated GIFs and videos. The group messaging function also enables sharing tweets among friends.
One professionally-oriented addition is support for Teams, which let organizations share accounts between multiple users. Another is the ability to get columns and notifications for Dataminr, a service that analyzes Twitter content and other public data to pick up signals of events such as disasters or stock fluctuations.
Tweetdeck for Mac is a free download and requires OS X 10.6.
Available for iPhone and Android, the app asks users to record a video up to 20 seconds in length. That clip can be tagged with custom or existing topics, and then added to by other Riff users shooting their own videos. Over time the number of joined clips can build until hundreds or thousands of people have contributed.
Highlighted videos are shown on the homescreen, but users are prompted to log into Facebook to find videos by friends. This also lets users share videos to their Facebook profiles, whether or not they participated in them.
The iPhone version of Riff is a free download for devices on iOS 8.
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