Yesterday, we showed you how to upgrade late model MacBooks with a 480GB or 1TB SSD. In some cases these upgrades might yield eight times the original capacity of the machine’s internal storage.
While it’s certainly nice to have the option of upgrading, such enhancements do come with downsides. First, there’s the price: it’s $600 to upgrade to a 1TB drive. Second, the upgrade breaks Boot Camp support.
But $600 is relatively cheap when you compare what it costs to score a MacBook with a 1TB SSD. MacBooks feature faster PCIe storage, but it’s still a high price to pay for something so vital — and so cheap by today’s standards.
Apple’s MacBook line has an issue with internal flash storage prices. It’s a problem that continues to worsen, especially as Apple has made it increasingly difficult for users to upgrade.
Review: OWC’s Aura PCIe flash storage lets you upgrade the storage capacity of your Mid-2013 and later MacBook [U: Now works with Boot Camp]
As an owner of a Late 2013 MacBook Pro with Retina Display, it’s slowly beginning to show its age. However, I find that this machine, an i7-powered rig with 16GB of RAM, is still plenty powerful for the applications that I run on a day-to-day basis. For example, with Final Cut Pro X, it’s not the fastest machine in the world (it lacks dedicated graphics), but it’s still plenty competent when it comes to editing and exporting 4K videos.
The biggest bottleneck that I’ve encountered with this computer is its storage capabilities, and that’s something I’ve been trying to deal with since the day I purchased it. With only 256 GB of flash storage, space has been hard to come by since day one. That wouldn’t be so bad if there was a way to upgrade the amount of internal storage, but sadly there has been no upgrade solution…until now.
Back in early March, OWC made a splash by announcing the very first flash storage upgrade solution the MacBook Pro as far back as the Late-2013 product cycle, and the MacBook Air, as far back as the Mid-2013 product cycle. Yes, finally! MacBook Pro and MacBook Air owners with qualifying machines can come out of the storage dark ages with OWC’s new Aura PCIe flash storage upgrade.
Today, aftermarket Mac upgrade specialists OWC announced that the long-awaited PCIe flash storage upgrades for late model Mac laptops are now available. MacBook Pro, as far back as the Late-2013 product cycle, and MacBook Air, as far back as the Mid-2013 product cycle, are eligible to upgrade. Upgrades include a 480GB or a 1TB PCIe-based flash storage solution.
Considering that many of these Macs shipped with anemic 128GB or 256GB SSDs, this can be considered a major upgrade. For instance, with MacBook Airs that featured 128GB of flash storage space, a 1TB upgrade equals 8x the storage space, a significant increase in eligible storage.
9to5Toys Last Call: PNY 64GB USB3 Flash Drive $16, iPad Air 2 64GB $490, Olio Smartwatch giveaway, more
Today’s can’t miss deals:
Last Call Updates:
Goat Simulator for iOS goes free for the first time as IGN’s Game of the Month ($5 value)
- Storage: WD Portable USB 3.0 HDD $50 (Orig. $100), Samsung 500GB 2.5″ Internal SSD $150 (Reg. $180+), more
- AT&T offers new customers up to $500 in credits to switch to its wireless service plan
- Solenica’s solar-powered Lucy lamp shines light into the dark spaces in your home
- The new Art of Lego Scale Modeling design book gives directions for custom projects: $22 Prime shipped (Reg. $30)
- Home: Stainless steel pressure cookers from $86 (Orig. $120+), Keurig mini brewer $70 (Reg. $100), more
Amazon Gold Box – PNY storage up to 50% off: 64GB USB3 Flash Drive $16, 128GB microSD $52, 64GB SDXC $22, more
Apple iPad Air 2 Wi-Fi 64GB in Gold, Silver or Space Gray for $490 shipped (Reg. $599)
Giveaway: Olio Model One Black Collection Connected Timepiece for iOS and Android ($795 value)
NomadPlus converts your iPhone USB wall charger into a 1800mAh power bank: $20 shipped (Orig. $40)
App Store Free App of the Week: Matter 3D photo effects goes free for the first time ($3 value)
Pay What You Want For The 10 App Mac Power User Bundle (Orig. $383)
More new gear from today:
VIZIO 49-inch 4K 120Hz Smart LED UHDTV $650 shipped (Reg. $770), more
- Spigen Rugged Armor Apple Watch Case & Night Stand: $22 Shipped (Orig. $35, CA Tax Only)
- Games/Apps: BOGO 40% off already discounted amiibo, Space Inversion 2 HD, more iOS freebies
- The best-selling Brother Monochrome Laser Printer is on sale for $50 shipped (Orig. $120), more
- CyberPower 6-outlet + USB power bar $100 ($130 value), APC Back-UPS 8-outlet $100 (Reg. $130)
- Audio-Technica AT2020USB+ mic & CAD Acousti-Shield $159 shipped ($257 value)
- Daily Deals: Toshiba 13.3″ Chromebook 2 (refurb) $200, ZILU 40w 5-Port USB Charger $12, more
More deals still alive:
Back to school essentials you may have overlooked: Litographs tees, dorm decor, GE alarm kit, more
Bose SoundTrue On-Ear Headphones in black or white: $90 shipped (Reg. $120)
The coolest Apple-certified MFI Lightning cables you can buy for your iPhone, iPad and iPod
- 1byone Digital Indoor HDTV Antenna: $13 Shipped (Orig. $36, CA Tax Only)
- Amazon’s Kindle First delivers Prime members early access to books for free, see August’s picks
- Two Philips Hue connected light bulbs (multiple styles) for $100 shipped (~$120 value)
- Save 50% on the entire Infinity Blade Trilogy: $5 (Reg. $10)
- Aukey Tempered Glass Screen Protectors for iPhone 6/Plus from $2 Prime Shipped
- Readdle app sale 50% or more off: Scanner Pro 6, Printer Pro, Calendars 5, PDF Expert 5, more
- Lenmar MAVEN Apple-Certified MFi 3000mAh iPhone 6 Battery Case: $30 shipped (Reg. $62+)
- 802.11ac Routers: Linksys AC1200+ $87 (Orig. $130), TRENDnet AC1200 $20 shipped (Orig. $52)
- PreSonus Ceres 3.5-inch Powered Speakers w/ Bluetooth streaming $100 shipped (Reg. $230)
- Pre-pay for 3 months of Sling TV and receive a $50 Best Buy credit towards streaming devices
- Logitech $20 off $49: MX Master Wireless Mouse $80 shipped (Reg. $100), gaming accessories, more
- TP-LINK V2 N300 Powerline Adapter/Wireless Range Extender $25 Prime shipped (Orig. $60)
- Gears of War: Ultimate Edition owners will get the entire GOW collection for free on Xbox One
- ALEX Learning and Building Toys 40% Off: science kits from $13, connector sets from $22, more
- TigerVPN Lite Lifetime Subscription: $29 (Orig. $790)
- Drive Genius 4 app for maintaining & repairing your Mac: $50 (Orig. $99)
- Complete this Chipotle trivia game & receive a buy one, get one free coupon
New products & more:
Thermos’ latest water bottle will nag you with iOS notifications to make sure you stay hydrated
The new Graava action camera uses your heartbeat to capture the best moments and make a highlight reel
- The CydeKick uses renewable energy to charge your iPhone while you ride
- Blizzard brings the new World of Warcraft: Legion expansion & character class to Gamescom 2015
- DJI reveals a new Phantom 3 for beginner pilots loaded with specs
- Bang & Olufsen brings it all together with new whole home audio capabilities for existing products
- Review: Sony’s RX100 IV is the best compact photo/video camera that money can buy (Video)
- The Lexus Hoverboard is here: watch as it flies around a skatepark and over water
- Metal Gear Solid V The Phantom Pain gets brand new trailer & gameplay footage w/ commentary
- EA Gamescom 15: deep Need for Speed campaign mode, new Battlefront gameplay, more
- Microsoft announces new Halo 5 Limited EditionXbox One Console, DVR functionality, games and more
- Epson’s new EcoTank printers have enough ink for “two years” right out of the box
Today’s can’t miss deals:
Last Call Updates:
Apple iPad Air 2 Wi-Fi 64GB in all colors $500 shipped (Reg. $599)
- The Lumos Helmet provides the technology needed to bike safely
- Aukey deals w/ Prime shipping: 12,000mAh power bank $15 (Orig. $25), more
- Boost Mobile launches its first Wi-Fi Hotspot No-Contract plans as low as $25 a month
- Fallout 4 Pip-Boy Edition is sold out, you can still show your love w/ this quirky Fallout gear
- This transforming Optimus Prime LEGO build might be one of the most impressive yet
- Limited edition Street Fighter II Arcade Soundtrack comes to vinyl
- Home: Dyson upright vac (refurb) $225 (Orig. $500), more
Amazon Gold Box – SanDisk Flash Storage up to 50% off: 128GB microSD $60, 32GB Ultra Fit Flash Drive $11, more
iPad mini 2 Wi-Fi 16GB: $230 2-day shipped (Reg. $299)
iPad mini 3 Wi-Fi 16GB: $300 shipped (Reg. $399)
iPad Air Wi-Fi + Cellular 128GB in Silver: $449 shipped (Orig. $929)
13-inch Retina MacBook Pro: 2.7GHz/8GB/128GB
$1,100 shipped (Reg. $1,299)
15-inch Retina MacBook Pro w/ Force Touch $1,819 shipped (Reg. $1,999)
Amazon Prime Day Hub, monster sales announced: Fire Stick $24, 32-inch TV $75, and 40-inch TV $115, more
Walmart CEO blasts Amazon’s Prime Day, promises a week-long sales event with “some special atomic deals”
Amazon is throwing itself a birthday party so big it’ll make you forget about Black Friday
Review: SanDisk’s new Connect Wireless Stick is one of the easiest ways to expand your iPhone’s storage
Giveaway: Win one of SanDisk’s newly released massive 200GB microSD cards ($250 value)
Small States: A-Lamp Design fashions charming lights for your home from US materials, multiple giveaways
More new gear from today:
Beats by Dre 1-Day Sale: Powerbeats2 Bluetooth Headphones, Pill 2.0 Portable Speaker $130 ea (Reg. $200)
RAVPower Portable 3,200mAh External Battery Pack w/ Flashlight: $7 Prime shipped (Reg. $13)
- Games/Apps: Shadow of Mordor $15, Dragon Age Inquisition $20, more
- R.B.I. Baseball 15 for iOS gets its very first price drop: $2 (Reg. $5), more
- Headphones: Philips over-ears $50 (Reg. $70), JBL Synchros S500 $63 (Reg. $169)
- Amazon Fire TV Stick + Mohu Leaf 30 OTA Antenna $50 shipped ($74 value)
- PNY Turbo Plus 32GB USB 3.0 Flash Drive $10 shipped (Orig. $35)
- Microsoft’s $99 Universal Foldable Keyboard is now available
- Daily Deals: Fitbit Flex activity tracker $75, more
More deals still alive:
Samsung 850 EVO 250GB 2.5-inch Internal SSD $90 shipped (Orig. $140)
- Monoprice iPhone 5/s/c case sale w/ prices starting at $2 shipped
- Belkin’s MFi Lightning Keyboard for iPad is on sale for $40 shipped (Reg. $60)
- GameStop offers $100 trade-in credit towards New Nintendo 3DS
- ZyXEL AV500 Powerline kit with N300 Wireless Range Extender $30 shipped (Orig. $60)
- American Express rolls out PayPal competitor, offers $10 statement credit for trying it
- Newegg 10% off sitewide for students and faculty
- 3rd party Apple Watch bands prices are dropping
- NEwhere Elite Vaporizer kit w/ USB wall charger $20 shipped (Reg. $30) + 35% off e-liquids
- App Store Free App of the Week: Card Wars – Adventure Time goes free ($4 value)
- Jawbone BIG JAMBOX Wireless Bluetooth Speaker (refurb): $128 shipped (Orig. $300)
- Urge Basics Cuatro Bluetooth Speaker $20 Prime shipped (Reg. $30+)
- Buy select 2015 Samsung 4K UHDTVs & receive a free matching soundbar ($298 value)
- 1-month access to over 17,000 digital Marvel comics for $0.01 (Reg. $10)
- Apple is giving away free downloads of iOS cooking app Green Kitchen ($5 value)
- Free PS Plus Games for July: Styx Master of Shadows, Rocket League, more
- Free Xbox Gold Games for July: Assassin’s Creed IV Black Flag, more
- Striker Spy HD-Camera Drone: $70 Shipped (Orig. $170, CA Tax Only)
- Casetify custom Apple Watch bands: $70 credit for $50
New products & more:
The Lemunati CS1 coverts your iPhone 6 into a Super 8 style camcorder for an “upgraded” filming experience
This TIE Fighter look-alike music machine plays your favorite action theme songs
- Pixar tech director is building his own desktop robot companion with emotional intelligence
- The Call of Duty Black Ops 3 Juggernog Edition comes with a mini fridge to keep you frosty
- JoyDrone is a dongle for your Chromecast that supplies wireless audio to any speakers
- The original NES Battletoads soundtrack has been immortalized in this epic new vinyl LP
- The new Mamma Nessie Colander Spoon has been sighted
- Become the Knight Rider with the K.I.T.T. USB Car Charger
- Microsoft HoloLens partners with Case Western to make medical school like a video game
- GoPro’s new HERO4 Session waterproof action camera
- Review: JBL’s new Charge 2+ and Clip+ deliver big sound in a portable Bluetooth package
- Watch this remote controlled flying R2-D2 drone take its first flight
- Rory Mcllroy’s PGA TOUR lets you play golf on Battlefield 4’s Paracel Storm map
- Dot is the “world’s smallest” set of Bluetooth earphones with a battery life to match
- Slip Cup Beer Pong inserts keep your balls clean and your cups full
- Capcom’s official life-size Mega Man helmet includes working LED lights
- Disney unveils the first official Star Wars mobile app w/ lightsaber training, more
Review: Imation’s Link Power Drive adds 16/32/64GB of storage to a compact 3,000mAh Lightning battery pack
There wasn’t really a market for hybrid batteries and external flash drives until this year, when Mophie’s Space Pack seemingly came out of nowhere, impressively nestling 16 or 32GB of additional flash storage inside a 1700mAh iPhone 5/5s battery case. But having demonstrated the value of combining these features together, Mophie’s $150 to $180 asking prices were high enough to keep some people away, and the requirement of an iPhone 5 or 5s was similarly somewhat limiting.
Imation is trying something different with its Link Power Drive, a small plastic box with a silver top and white base. There are 16GB, 32GB, and 64GB models, each equipped with a 3000mAh battery, a Lightning cable, and a USB cable. The MSRP of the 16GB unit is less than any Space Pack, and the 64GB model has twice Mophie’s top capacity for the same MSRP — except Imation’s street pricing is much lower. Better yet, every model works with whatever Lightning-equipped iOS device you might have, and there’s enough battery power to completely recharge any iPhone except the iPhone 6 Plus. All you need to do is carry the accessory around separately, attaching it when needed.
There’s a certain marketing genius to Apple’s tiered pricing for flash storage on its iPhones and iPads. Since customers can’t add storage via a microSD card later, they have to decide in advance how much storage they need, and many of us are going to err on the side of safety, bumping our purchase up to a higher price-band.
Adding $100 or $200 to the price of an iDevice for maybe $5-10 worth of flash storage/controller capacity is an important source of income for Apple, and one of the reasons its margins are so high. Whatever the company makes on a 16GB device, if it can upsell you to a 32GB or 64GB (or even 128GB, in the case of the iPad), almost all of the premium charged on those beefier models is pure profit.
It’s not money Apple would give up lightly, but I do wonder whether it’s sustainable …
While Android devices have the greatest market share, the evidence that iOS users do more with their devices continues to grow. The latest survey by analytics company Arieso found that iDevices took six out of the top ten slots in terms of the amount of data downloaded by 2013 devices. All numbers use the iPhone 3G as their base, and exclude the iPad Air which was launched after the survey ended.
Unsurprisingly, the company found that our appetite for data grows with each generation of device, as they become increasingly capable. iPhone 5s owners, for example, download 19 percent more data than iPhone 5 owners.
But tellingly, iPhone 5s owners download 41 percent more data than the Samsung Galaxy S4, Samsung’s current flagship handset (a figure that increases to 54 percent in developing markets). A previous study showed that iPhone users spend more time using their phones than do Android owners.
In a separate analysis by the UK consumer association Which?, the iPhone 5c was found to have the greatest amount of usable storage space after built-in apps were accounted for. Comparing the 16GB models of eight leading smartphones, the 5c was found to leave users with 12.6GB of storage, with the 5s at 12.2GB taking third place behind the Nexus 5. The Samsung Galaxy S4 took bottom place, with just over half of its 16GB space available to the user.
Apple releases Flash Storage Firmware Update 1.1 for mid-2012 MacBook Air, launches replacement program for affected drives
Apple has released a firmware update for the mid-2012 MacBook Air. The update attempts to resolve an issue that affects 64 GB and 128 GB models sold between June 2012 and June 2013. Apple says that the problem could lead to data loss. As this is a serious issue, the company has agreed to replace any affected drives that are unable to be updated. If the update installer detects that your drive is one of the models needing to be replaced, it will direct you to a page on Apple’s website that will allow you to obtain a replacement …
Apple has released a new firmware update for the mid 2012 MacBook Air today that helps to address problems with the device recovering from a crash. Apple release notes said the update addresses “a storage firmware issue that, in rare cases, may cause a system to fail to recover from crash.”
The MacBook Air Flash Storage Firmware Update 1.0 is available to download on Apple’s website here and should be hitting Software Update soon. The 1.69 MB update is available for mid 2012 MacBook Airs running OS X 10.7.5 or OS X 10.8.3.
Apple is for the first time offering Solid State Drive (SSD) options on iMacs, bringing the number of drive configurations to four, reports MacRumors.
Those with lots of movies, music and photos to store will probably still want either the standard 1Tb hard drive or the fusion drive (a 128Gb SSD acting as a buffer to the 1Tb hard drive). But those with more modest storage requirements who want to significantly boost the speed of the machine can now choose a rather pricey 256Gb or 512Gb SSD to replace the hard drive.