Apple has enjoyed another monster twelve months in 2014, despite ironically beginning the calendar year with lukewarm sales figures and its share price dropping significantly. This seems a very long time ago indeed now, as the consumer electronics giant has gone from strength to strength since then.
Looking back at Apple’s year it is clear that virtually every product it has released has paid off. So here is a breakdown of everything that Apple brought to consumers during the last 12 months.
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March 18 – iPhone 5c (8GB)
Apple’s year began with this fairly innocuous upgrade of the existing iPhone 5c. This budget mobile device has shifted a lot of units for Apple, and the corporation clearly felt it was worthwhile to launch a new version early in 2015.
April 29 – MacBook Air
The MacBook laptop range has been hugely critically acclaimed, and has been a massive hit with consumers. With this in mind, Apple made this small upgrade to the MacBook in April. There would be bigger fish to fry later in the year, but this was nonetheless a useful release for Apple at this juncture.
June 18 – iMac (21.5”)
As it continues to seek a serious foothold in the desktop market, Apple launched a new version of its more affordable iMac in June of this year. Again, there were bigger releases to come later in 2014 with regard to desktops, and one of these in particular was big news for the computing market.
June 26 – iPod Touch (16GB)
Apple is almost ready to put the iPod out to pasture, but before it does so, it first released what will probably be the final version of the iPod Touch. MP3 players have been rendered pretty much obsolete by smartphones which can play music just as well as any digital music player. But the iPod will always be important to Apple as it was a massive success which helped it establish the predominance of its iTunes service.
July 29 – MacBook Pro
In July of this year, Apple updated its MacBook Pro range. This is considered by many people to be the finest laptop computer on the planet, and although laptops are not as fashionable as they were at one time, certainly the MacBook provides an attractive visage and powerful package for professionals and home users alike.
September 17 – iOS 8
Not strictly a product release, but there is little of more importance in Apple’s year than a new release of its mobile operating system. iOS 8 brought many improvements and technical tinkerings to the iPhone and iPad range, and set the foundations for Apple Pay, which will be a hugely significant technology in the coming years.
September 19 – iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus
The flagship release of 2014, as in most years for Apple, was a new iPhone. The iPhone 6 was perhaps not quite as revolutionary as many were expecting, but it was still a significant redesign of the formula laid out by the previous iPhone generation.
This was also a particularly significant iPhone release, as it included the first ever phablet-sized smartphone that Apple had produced. The iPhone 6 Plus served the purpose of providing a new product niche for Apple, as this had been very much demanded by the city when sales results had been less significant than expected earlier in the year.
October 16 – OS X Yosemite (Version 10.10), iMac with 5K Retina display & iMac Mini
October 16 was certainly a significant date in Apple’s year, as the corporation released no fewer than three products on this autumnal Thursday. OS X Yosemite probably passed without a great deal of attention given the other product releases made on this day, but an update to the operating system which comes free with Apple laptops and desktops was significant given another product release which coincided with it.
This was also a red letter day for completing, as Apple released the first ever desktop computer with a 5K display. The new iMac Retina device is an extremely powerful performer, and one that many desktop users across the world are eyeing up with envy.
In addition to these two significant releases for Apple’s desktop range, the date also saw Apple beginning to spruce up its tablet computing portfolio. The iMac Mini was the smaller and more affordable version of the two desktops released by Apple in the year, but it was still well received by both critics and consumers alike, and presents a relative budget option for consumers who crave an Apple desktop.
October 20 – Apple Pay
Another significant date in the history of Apple was October 20, during which Apple informed consumers that its Apple Pay system had finally gone live. This mobile payment system is predicted to be extremely significant in the future, as consumers increasingly make payments in retail stores via mobile devices. Apple wants to be in on the ground floor with this technology, and Apple Pay is a two-word phrase which could grown hugely in prominence in the coming years.
October 22 – iPad Air 2 & iPad Mini 3
Apple also updated its tablet range late in October with new versions of both the iPad Air and iPad Mini. Both devices have been due an update for some time, and the outstandingly well-received tablets certainly serve the purpose that Apple intended. The iPad Air 2 in particular is considered to be pretty much the pinnacle of tablet technology thus far, and they look set to reinvigorate a niche which had fallen in prominence lately.
Finally, one of the worst kept secrets in technology was finally confirmed in 2014. Apple divulged that it would release its first smartwatch during 2015, with the name surprisingly to be Apple Watch. It was assumed prior to this announcement that the device would be called iWatch, but Apple confounded this during the iPhone 6 unveiling event.
The Apple Watch is set to be Apple’s first big device release of 2015, and when it finally hits the markets it will complete a two-year cycle of rumors, leaks and general gossip.