Apple Introduces Insanely Thin iMac

| Product News

Apple introduced a new iMac on Tuesday that can only be described as insanely thin. Apple marketing VP Phil Schiller introduced the new device during the iPad mini media event in San Jose.

New iMac

Phil Schiller with the new iMac

The new device comes in two models, a 21.5-inch display with 1920 x 1080 resolution, and a 27-inch model at 2560 x 1440, same as before. They're less than an inch thick, however, a significant reduction in size and weight. Mr. Schiller said they weigh 8 pounds less.

New iMac

New iMacs.

The 27-inch also has a new option called Fusion Drive, a combination of SSD and hard drive that your Mac will intelligently use to optimize performance. We'll have more on the Fusion Drive in separate coverage, and we'll update this article with additional details once Apple posts its press releases.

The 21.5-inch model will start at US$1,299, while the 27-inch will start at $1,799. They will ship in November.

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NOT digging the loss of the optical drive. Not at all.


Please, please, please tell me I can get inside one of these things. If I can’t get in to even swap the RAM myself, then I probably just bought my last Apple desktop.


I can understand the desire to continue to push the boundaries of how thin a laptop can be, since smaller size and reduced weight have practical repercussions in the use of the product. What I don’t get is the push to make a desktop “insanely thin” other than “because we can.” Was anyone actually looking at their iMacs and lamenting, “This computer is too thick. I wish I had one much thinner”? At least the reduced weight will make the shipping a little more environmentally friendly.

None of that is to say that this isn’t a very, very nice product. I just fail to see how “super-duper thin desktop replacing already thin enough desktop” is a major selling point or necessary design goal.


it’s very clear, Apple does NOT want anyone tampering with their machines.


I do not believe Apple cares what you do with it after you bought it. What they DO care about is how it looks.

People come over to my house and they still marvel at my 2007 24” iMac on the desk. They say how cool it looks and how sophisticated it looks. Making it thinner will just make it look that much cooler and sleeker.

These are not utilitarian machines to be mucked around inside of, they are objet d’art!

They are fast, good looking and extremely useful machines. Other than updated the OS, I haven’t had the need to get inside. The typical Apple customer doesn’t want to get inside either. When it gets long it the tooth, they’ll give it to their kids or parents and buy the one with the display as thin as a human hair!


@akcarver get an external. But I do want to know where the hard drive is! I guess I’ll have to watch the event back.

Bryan Chaffin

Thinner affects: Materials, weight, shipping, recyclability, coolness, aesthetics, usability (notably the thinnest case there, but think wall mounts), and most importantly, awesomeness.

Some of those are definitely subjective, but the first four are not.


And I thought this company was asleep at the switch—to mobile.
I like light and thin but we have strong winds up here and I like to keep my windows open.
I suspect there is method in the madness of this design. It is in transition, but transition to what? Apple doesn’t do radical change on old platforms for random sake. And I done thin’ it is just a nod to some TV in the making just to show what Apple can do.


Ok, well according to the Apple website, the 27” model has user accessible RAM slots. That’s conspicuously absent from the 21” model.

Still, bang for the buck simply is not there anymore. There’s no way I can justify the cost of a 27” iMac with the upgraded CPU and GPU compared to a PC with similar internals.


Yeah, I think the loss of 8+ Lbs is a very big deal.
I wonder why they limited the Fusion Drive to the 27” iMac.

Bob T.

I’m an engineer, so I know something about technical design.  The thinner a computer is, the more tightly packed the components, the hotter it will run, the more likely something will fail.  This is just basic “laws of physics” stuff.  In addition, the fact that they had to struggle with getting the “screen bonding” process to work is another indication that they’re on the hairy edge of this thing failing (e.g. screen delaminating over time, air bubbles appearing, etc).  Of course it looks cool, but let’s face it, the older iMac looked extremely cool also (dare I say, “cool enough”?).  By pushing the packaging envelope in this way, Apple has sacrificed reliability and robustness, just to go from “ridiculously thin” to “insanely thin”.  And who ultimately pays the price?  We do—either by having to pay for Apple Care to protect our failure-prone new toy, or (if we roll the dice) by having to replace it years before we should have had to.  I would personally MUCH rather have an iMac that is less thin, has an optical drive, and will let me sleep at night not worrying that I’m “on the edge of failure” with my new toy.

Bryan Chaffin

Bob T, I think you’re putting the worry cart before the horse. Note our follow up article about [URL=“"the iMac being thicker than it seems[/URL], too. That may allay some of your concerns.

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