Apple has a new event today called “Back to the Mac” where they will be telling you about new products and new updates.  Check back here for live updates and pictures.

Apple’s online store is down for the moment so they can get ready for new items.

12:00 pm – – Steve is Out.

– – “Good morning everyone. I’d like to talk about revenue in putting the Mac business in context. The Mac made up 33% of our revenue last year. That was 22 billion.”

– – “To put this in some context, the mac company, if it were standalone… and we have no plans to do that… would be #110 on the Fortune 500.”

10:03AM – – “Now, with the share rising and the units rising much faster than the industry, we have a very vibrant dev community. We have 600k registered Mac devs. They’re growing at 30k per month.”

10:04AM  – -“We have new devs like Valve, they’re bringing titles simultaneously to the Mac and PC. Like Half Life. This is great for the Mac, and a great shot in the arm for gaming on Macs.”

10:04AM “AutoCAD is coming to the mac — we’ve coveted this for a long time.”

10:04AM “And then we have devs who are continuing to invest in the Mac like Microsoft.”

10:05AM “The Mac is #1 seventh year in the row, and Consumer Reports, #1 in the last decade.”

10:06AM “Pretty incredible results. Fueling this momentum is this incredible push into retail, which is still under 10 years old. Our stores welcomed 75m visitors last year. They sold 2.8m Macs. And about 50% of those are new to the Mac.”

10:08AM  – –  Steve Jobs is back on stage.”So let’s move on to some new products. I’d like to talk about iLife. It’s widely regarded as the best suite of digital lifestyle apps in the world. You can’t do this on any other computer. We improve it every year or two, coming out with new version.”

10:09AM  – – “We have a new version we’re announcing today — iLife 11. We want to give you a look at the apps. The first one is iPhoto — we tried this fullscreen mode in the last release — the response has been so great that we’re fleshing it out, you can live full screen. We’ve got a lot of Facebook enhancements, we’ve made it easy and elegant to email photos, we’ve added some new slideshows…”

10:10AM – – “A big leap in books. We’re printing 2m books a year. And we’re adding beautiful letterpress cards. A lot of great stuff. To take us through a demo, here’s Phil Schiller.”

10:11AM – – “I can click on faces and get a fullscreen faces view… and there’s a new fullscreen places view too. It’s gorgeous.”

10:12AM – – “You see pushpins on the map from every place I took photos — I can hover my mouse over any pin — I can click on it to go right to my photos, or I can say ‘show photos’ and that’s every photo from around that place.”

10:12AM  – -“We’ve got some amazing new slideshow themes.”

10:13AM – – “Let’s go into album view. The albums look a little like the albums you have on an iPad.”

10:14AM – – “This is called the reflections template.”

10:15AM – – “So that’s just three examples of templates for slideshows. Steve mentioned there’s a great new way to send photos via email. It can be cumbersome to cut and paste to get a bunch of images into an email.”

10:16AM  – -“I can just select them and say share, and right from inside of iPhoto it prepares an email.”

10:17AM – – “I’ve never left iPhoto and I mailed those off. It’s easy.”

10:18AM “Here you can see friends on Facebook and what they responded back after I posted it. So that’s sharing photos. Well what if I want to create one of these new books?”

10:20AM – – “I have complete control of this. I can customize it with a simple drag and drop. There it is. Maybe I want to highlight this page and make it really special.”

10:20AM  – – iPhoto now has a project view which is a fullscreen wooden bookshelf, a la iBooks.

10:21AM  – – Letterpress cards? There’s a video to explain them. Oh, it’s actual letterpressing. That’s kind of cool.

10:22AM  – -Steve is back… “I think that’s awesome. This is why we do what we do.”

10:23AM  – -“So we’ve taken iPhoto and broadened the full screen mode… we’ve taken books up a notch, and these letterpress cards… we’re really excited about these new features. And that’s iPhoto 11. Next up, iMovie.”

10:24AM “The number one request we got in the last version was better audio editing. We want to be able to do sophisticated editing really easy — if you don’t want to learn Final Cut Pro.”

10:25AM  – -“You can see here the audio waveform shows the fade in in this clip, and it’s all done live.”

10:26AM  – -“You can now select segments of audio — you can move the levels of just that segment. It gets quiet in just the segment we selected.”

10:26AM  – -“We’ve added audio effects…” This is cool, realtime preview of audio effects. Pretty fun stuff.

10:27AM – – “I want to show you something called one step effects. We’ve got a nice double jump here — it’d be really nice if we did an instant replay…”

10:28AM  – -“So really complex editing with just a couple of clicks. The next thing I want to show you is movie trailers. We now have 15 movie trailers.”  Hell YES!  INSTANT Movie Trailers.

Tons of people are going to be making trailers and posting them on youtube.  OH BOY!

10:30AM  – -Being able to adjust FPS speed! A minor note here — but that’s big.

10:31AM  – -You can switch to 24fps if you like.

10:31AM – -The trailer tool gives you templates that ask for specific types of clips. You just drag and drop the appropriate clips into the outline.

10:32AM  – -Face detection tech from iPhoto is in use here, can now detect faces in video. Can also detect whether a shot is a close up or wide. Pretty interesting application of the technology.

I cannot wait to start making trailers.  The killer muppets trailer will get better.

10:37AM  – -Steve is back! “That is awesome, you know Randy and his team invented all this stuff.”

10:38AM – – “So a lot of great new features in iMovie 11. We also have a new Garageband. Garageband 11. It has some great new features to help you fix timing in your music, something called flextime… more effects… and new piano and guitar lessons. Here’s Xander Soren.”

10:40AM  – -“We’re going to open an existing song. Now imagine a group of kids have gotten together to jam in their garage, and every recorded to a drum loop. Now I think it’s going to be clear that these guys are going to need a little help.” Ouch, lots of off time playing. “Kind of mess, right? Well the problem is the rhythm, everyone is playing sloppy. Drums are great, they’re the only thing in the song that’s right.”

10:41AM  – -So the new GB does “groove correction” automatically.

10:41AM – – “We don’t want our songs sounding robotic.

10:41AM – – “Much better, right? It’s like an automatic spell checker for bad rhythm.”

10:43AM – – Flextime allows auto dragging of lengths of waveforms. You can make notes longer or shorter at will.

10:44AM  – – New fullscreen view of Lessons — again, looks very much like an iPad application. It’s pretty clear where Apple is headed with this stuff.

10:45AM  – -New “how did I play” is a lot like Rock Band… but less fun.

10:46AM  – – It keeps a history of your performances so you can relive painful mistakes.

10:47AM  – – Steve is back!

10:48AM – – “Isn’t that great? So, GarageBand 11 with some great new features in it. Over 5m use GarageBand now. So, iLife 11. iLife 11, all this amazing engineering that’s gone into these products… is free with every new Mac. If you want to upgrade your existing Mac, just $49.”

10:48AM  – – “And iLife 11 is available today.”

10:48AM  – – “Thanks to Greg and everbody on his team. So that’s iLife. Next up, I’d like to talk about FaceTime.”

10:49AM – – “The number 1 request we’ve gotten is, can we please do FaceTime calling with these devices and the Mac? We’re introducing FaceTime for the Mac today.”

10:51AM “There’s nothing to set up, there’s nothing to configure… it’s a very simple demo.”

10:52AM – – “So that’s FaceTime for the Mac, and we’re going to release that in beta… today!”

10:52AM – – “There’s the new logo.”

10:52AM – – “Now, next up, the entrée for today… we want to give you a sneak peak at where we’re going with OS X.”

10:53AM  – -“We’ve had seven major releases of OS X in the last decade. We’re improving with every release. We’re happy with Snow Leopard, but we’re going to take it even further. We’re going to give you a preview of the next version… and we call it Lion.”

10:54AM – – “What is the philosophy about Lion? That’s where Back to the Mac comes from. We started with OS X and we created a new version called iOS — it’s now used in the iPad as well. We’re inspired by some of those innovations. And we want to bring them back to the mac. Mac OS X meets the iPad.”

10:55AM – – “These are going to be some of the most exciting things. We want to show you a few key features. So what have we learned and become inspired by on the iPad? Multitouch gestures… the App Store… why not the Mac too?”

10:55AM – –  “App Home screens… full screen apps — every app on the iPad is a fullscreen app.”

10:55AM – – “Apps on the iPad auto save, you don’t have to bother saving your data. And when you launch apps, they auto resume… that’d be great on the Mac too.”

10:56AM – – “We want to bring some of this stuff back to the Mac.”

10:56AM – – “Let’s talk about a few of these — multitouch gestures. The first thing you think of is this…” Finger touching a MBP screen.

10:57AM – –  “It gives great demo, but after a while your arm feels like it’s going to fall off. Touch surfaces want to be horizontal.”

10:57AM – – “We put a trackpad on our mouse, and we’ve come out with a pure trackpad for desktops.”

10:58AM – – “The App Store — it’s been huge as you know. On the iPhone it’s completely revolutionized mobile apps. Over 7b apps have been downloaded. We’d like to bring it back to the Mac. For Lion we’ll have a Mac App Store.”

10:58AM – – Best place to discover apps. One click downloads. Auto app updates. Free and paid apps with a 70 / 30 split. Apps are licensed for use on all your personal Macs.

10:59AM  – -“That is the Mac app store. You’ll have a single place to put them — the launch pad — home screens for your apps.”

10:59AM – – “So there’s one other thing we’d like to show you today. We have these four cool things we do in OS X. Expose, Dashboard, full screen apps, and spaces…”

11:00AM – – “This is great, but as we’ve added fullscreen apps, you know we have four of these things. Wouldn’t it be great to unify these? And we’ve done that in something we call mission control.”

11:00AM  – -App Store is a standalone app — looks a lot like iTunes.

11:01AM – – In fact, nearly identical, and navigation seems largely the same as well. It also auto-tracks updates.

11:01AM  – -“I want to show you just how easy it is to install an app.”

11:02AM One-click on the “buy” button. Drops the app into your dock and auto-downloads.

11:02AM  – -“That’s the Mac App Store.”

11:02AM  – -“Next up is the launchpad.”

11:03AM  – -You can also create folders, exactly like iOS. This is essentially an iOS Springboard layer on OS X.

11:05AM  – -You can use a multitouch gesture to swipe away from your fullscreen app and back onto the desktop or another app.

11:05AM – – Dashboard is now a screen you can flip to using gestures.

11:06AM – – Mission Control is an Expose view of your windows, your open apps (at least the fullscreen ones), and your dock.

11:07AM – –  It layers apps with multiple Windows in a stack, almost identical to Palm’s new webOS stacks!

11:07AM – –  Steve is back.

11:08AM  – -“We’re really excited about Lion. These new features are going to delight Mac users.”

11:08AM  – – “I wish we had another hour and a half to show you more. Our plan is to release Lion this summer, 2011.”

11:08AM – – “So that is OS X Lion.”

11:09AM – – “Now I want to go back and talk about the App Store for a minute. The Mac App Store is going to be really great for our users. We don’t want to wait for Lion. We’re going to put it out on Snow Leopard, and will open within 90 days.”

11:11AM – – “These are the things we wanted to share with you today… but there is one more thing.”

11:11AM  – – “That one more thing really comes back to our theme today. We talked about this virtuous circle.”

11:12AM – – “Just like this philosophy has benefit in our software, it can have benefit in our hardware. What would happen is a Mac met an iPad?”

11:12AM  – -“Instant on… great battery life, amazing standby time… solid state storage… and it’s thinner and lighter.”

11:13AM – – “These are some great things for notebooks. So we asked ourselves, what would happen if a MacBook and an iPad hooked up?”

11:13AM – – “This is the result… it is our new MacBook Air, and we think it’s the future of notebooks.”

11:14AM  – -“It’s amazingly thin. At its thickest point, it is 0.68 inches thin. And it tapers to .11 inches. And it weighs 2.9 lbs.”

11:14AM – – “It’s hard enough to build something thin — but we want our products to be durable. So the new Air is complete Unibody construction.”

11:14AM – –  “So let me tell you a bit about it. It’s got a 13.3 inch LED backlit display.”

11:15AM  – – 1440 x 900 display, Core 2 Duo CPU, NVIDIA GeForce 320m, multitouch trackpad, FaceTime camera.

11:15AM  – -“There is no optical drive, and there is no hard drive. We have gone to flash storage. Why do we do this?”

11:16AM – – “Because we know the benefits from the iPad. Instant on. It’s much more reliable. And it’s 90% smaller and lighter.”

11:17AM  – – “The wireless web tests… these… the PC industry’s tests don’t reflect real world use. We’re moving to more real world tests. Even in these tests, we’re getting 7 hours of battery life. We think it’s a double improvement.”

11:18AM – – “So what’s inside this puppy? Let’s take a look. We have flash storage. 802.11n WiFi, C2D CPU, memory, stereo speakers… and our battery. You see what the biggest thing is in there. It’s our battery.”

11:19AM – – “Now this 13.3 inch MacBook Air isn’t the whole story… because it has a younger brother.”

11:19AM  – -11.6 inch little brother — even smaller and lighter.

11:20AM – – “So what are we going to price these at? We’ve tried to be really aggressive. We think all notebooks will be like this someday.”

11:20AM  – – Pricing starts at $999.

11:21AM  – -“Both of them are available starting… today.”

That’s it.  Thanks for reading along.

By Bryan Kluger

Former husky model, real-life Comic Book Guy, genre-bending screenwriter, nude filmmaker, hairy podcaster, pro-wrestling idiot-savant, who has a penchant for solving Rubik's Cubes and rolling candy cigarettes on unreleased bootlegs of Frank Zappa records.

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