Apple announces new 13-inch MacBook Pro Retina Display

Apple Senior VP of Worldwide product marketing, Phil Schiller, announces the new 13-inch MacBook Pro. (Photo by …Ahead of the iPad Mini announcement, Apple's Phil Schiller took to the stage in San Jose, California to announce the new 13-inch MacBook Pro with Retina Display.

As Schiller mentioned in the announcement, the 13-inch MacBook Pro is the best-selling Mac, meaning it was worth Apple's time to roll out a comparable model to the 15-inch MacBook Pro Retina Display unveiled earlier this year.

Priced at $1699 USD for a base model, the 13-inch MacBook Pro offers more than just a high-resolution screen, although that is going to be a selling point for many people. It offers a 2560 x 1600 resolution, which Schiller joked is the second highest resolution of any laptop (the first, of course, being the 15-inch MacBook Pro Retina Display). Schiller went on to say that it has almost double the pixels of any HDTV at 4,096,000 pixels, although as the CNET team noted during their livestream coverage, that has been true for a long time, anyway.

The new display also offers a 29% higher contrast ratio, 75% reduced reflection and a 178-degree viewing angle, allowing you to watch the screen from positions beyond seated directly in front. While it was announced at the launch for the 15-inch MacBook that third-party applications like Adobe Photoshop had been optimized for the Retina Display, that list has now grown to include software like Pixelmator, Evernote, and games such as Civilization 5.

Inside, the 13-inch MacBook Pro is also getting some improvements, including a boost to 7 hour battery life, the option of up to 768GB of flash memory, 8GB of RAM with an Intel HD 4000 graphics card and an i5 or i7 Ivy Bridge processor.

One of the coolest features of the new 13-inch MacBook Pro is the Power Nap feature: users can put their computers to sleep and still perform all the background-type functions slike downloading, syncing with other devices and updating calendars.

On the outside, the new 13-inch MacBook Pro includes many of the updates to the ports and technology that other Apple products have received, including two Thunderbolt ports, two USB 3 ports, HDMI port, SD card reader and a MagSafe adapter. It also gets the new FaceTime HD camera and a backlit keyboard, which we've come to see as pretty standard on the MacBook Pros.