apple ipad

Tim Bradshaw

On a brisk, foggy Tuesdsay morning in San Francisco, Apple unveiled the iPad Air, a new tablet which is thinner and faster than the previous devices, in a bid to consolidate its grip on the high end of the tablet market.

In what it called the “lightest full-sized tablet in the world”, Apple said it had a “dramatically different experience” but the new tablet did not include the fingerprint reader that some had expected after it was introduced for the latest iPhone. The company also unveiled a new iPad mini and cut the cost of the original smaller tablet to $299, the cheapest price for an iPad ever.

Revealing a whole host of updates from mobile apps to its Mac OS update, it announced that it would now offer its software for free. Tim Cook, Apple’s chief executive, said the move was “turning the industry on its ear”.

Tim Bradshaw and Hannah Kuchler followed the launch for the FT’s Apple liveblog as Tim Cook took to the stage at the Yerba Buena Center for the Arts in downtown San Francisco.

 

Tech news from around the web:

Google’s Chrome 15 has replaced Microsoft’s Internet Explorer 8 (IE8) as the world’s most popular browser edition, Computer World reports. During the last two weeks of November and the first week of December, according to data from StatCounter, Chrome 15 accounted for 24% of the global browser usage market, compared to IE8′s 22.9%. This is the first time that IE8 had not held the top spot since early 2010 and the first time a non-Microsoft application has led the list. 

Tech news from around the web:

Citigroup’s research department says that Amazon is set to follow on from the launch of its Kindle Fire tablet computer with its own mobile phone, AllThingsDigital says. Citigroup analyst Mark Mahaney writes:

Based on our supply chain channel checks in Asia led by Kevin Chang, Citi’s Taipei-based hardware research analyst, we believe an Amazon Smartphone will be launched in 4Q12. Based on our supply chain check, we believe FIH is now jointly developing the phone with Amazon. However, we believe that Amazon will pay NRE (non-recurring engineering fees) to FIH but the device and multiple components will actually be manufactured by Hon Hai’s TMS business group (the same business group that makes Amazon’s E-reader and the 8.9” Amazon tablet).