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article imageApple Unveils World's First 17-inch Notebook at the Macworld Expo

By Jim Brown     Jan 8, 2003 in Technology
MACWORLD EXPO, San Francisco — For the first time in the 18 year history of the Macworld Conference & Expo, the keynote address took place the day before the exhibit floor opened to the public. Once again nobody was disappointed. Steve Jobs, Apple’s CEO, managed to delight the Mac faithful announcing a new Web browser, Safari; and two new aluminum alloy enclosure PowerBooks: the world’s first notebook computer with a 17-inch display and the smallest notebook ever with 12-inch active-matrix display. Jobs declared the new Macintosh products as the best that are available on the market.
The new 17-inch PowerBook G4 measures only 1-inch thin and weighs just 6.8 pounds and is also the first notebook to offer built-in AirPort Extreme 54 Mbps 802.11g wireless networking, new high-speed FireWire 800, a backlit keyboard with ambient light sensors, and built-in Bluetooth for wirelessly connecting to cell phones and other Bluetooth equipped peripherals.
“Apple’s taking another giant leap beyond PC notebooks with the world’s first 17-inch notebook, miraculously engineered into an ultra-light aluminum alloy enclosure that’s only 1-inch thin,” said Steve Jobs, Apple’s CEO. “Many users are going to wonder why they even need a desktop computer anymore.”
Most powerful Apple portable ever
The 17-inch PowerBook delivers the screen space and performance previously found only in desktop computer systems. The new PowerBook’s stunning 17-inch screen displays 1440-by-900 super-crisp pixels in a widescreen 16:10 aspect ratio. The 17-inch PowerBook is the most powerful Apple portable ever with a 1 GHz PowerPC G4 processor, new high-speed architecture, fast NVIDIA graphics and a slot-loading SuperDrive for playing and burning CDs and DVDs. Housed in a lightweight and durable aluminum alloy enclosure just 1-inch thin and weighing only 6.8 pounds, the new 17-inch PowerBook G4 model is the thinnest Apple notebook ever, and lighter than most competitors’ 15-inch and 16-inch notebooks.
World’s first fiber-optic backlit keyboard
The 17-inch PowerBook G4 includes the world’s first fiber-optic backlit keyboard, as well as ambient light sensors that control the brightness of the display and automatically regulate the keyboard backlighting. In low light, the 17-inch PowerBook G4 automatically illuminates the backlit keyboard and lowers the display brightness, reducing eye strain and extending battery life. As light levels increase, the display brightness is re-adjusted automatically and the keyboard backlighting is turned off.
Steve Jobs, managed to delight the Mac faithful announcing Safari the fastest Web browser for the Macintosh, based on an Open Source HTML rendering engine.
This truly integrated display and lighting solution is an industry first, and will be warmly greeted by professionals who spend long hours in front of computer screens in low light conditions.
AirPort Extreme and Bluetooth wireless networking
The new PowerBook G4 is the most wirelessly connected notebook ever, with both AirPort Extreme and Bluetooth wireless networking built in. AirPort Extreme is based on the new 802.11g standard and transmits data wirelessly at up to 54 Mbps—almost five times the data rate of previous wireless technologies—yet is fully compatible with the millions of 802.11b devices in use around the world. Built-in Bluetooth provides wireless connections to Bluetooth-enabled peripherals such as cell phones and PDAs. Apple’s new iSync software is included, so customers can automatically synchronize address books and calendars between Macs and Bluetooth capable cell phones.
New FireWire 800 port
This fascinating PowerBook includes a full complement of I/O ports, including two powered FireWire ports, one FireWire 400 port and one FireWire 800 port so customers can quickly transfer uncompressed digital video to high-capacity storage devices. And, it continues to be the only notebook to offer built-in Gigabit Ethernet (10/100/1000BASE-T).
G4 is 51 percent faster than a 2.2 GHz Pentium 4-based notebook
The new 17-inch PowerBook G4 is offering 1MB of level 3 cache and 512MB of fast Double Data Rate (DDR) memory running at 333 MHz. Combined with the power of Apple’s UNIX-based Mac OS X version 10.2 “Jaguar,” the new 17-inch PowerBook G4 runs professional applications including Adobe Photoshop up to 51 percent faster than a 2.2 GHz Pentium 4-based notebook. The new 17-inch PowerBook G4 comes with the NVIDIA GeForce4 440 Go graphics processor and 64MB of dedicated video memory capable of delivering 880 million textured pixels per second and advanced transform and lighting.
PowerBook G4 includes Apple's iLife applications
The two new PowerBook models — with 12- and 17-inch screens, respectively, sat side by side in the Apple Booth.
Pre-installed on every 17-inch PowerBook G4, “Jaguar” enhances the mobile experience with unique features including Instant On, which wakes the PowerBook from sleep in just one second; Automatic Networking, which automatically switches the network connections between Ethernet, 802.11 and modem; and advanced power management through Energy Saver Profiles for industry-leading battery life. Every new PowerBook G4 includes Apple's iLife applications, an integrated suite of award-winning software including iTunes 3 for managing digital music, iPhoto 2 for organizing and sharing digital photos, iMovie 3 for digital movie-making, and iDVD 3 for creating and burning Hollywood-style DVDs.
Pricing & Availability
The new 17-inch PowerBook G4 is expected to be available in February at Apple’s retail stores and Apple Authorized Resellers for a suggested retail price of $3,299 (US). Additional build-to-order options for the new PowerBook G4 include the ability to upgrade to up to 1GB of DDR RAM. AirPort Extreme Base Station.
More about Mac, G4, Steve Jobs, Apple Computers, PowerBook
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