17" MacBook Pro  (Source: Apple Insider)
Apple introduces a new 17" MacBook Pro during its final Macworld

During the opening keynote of the Apple Macworld Conference & Expo in San Francisco, Apple unveiled several new hardware and software technologies.  Despite Apple CEO Steve Jobs stepping aside to give keynote duties to Senior V.P. of Worldwide Product Marketing Phil Schiller, there was a certain level of anxiety as attendees were still unsure what to expect.

Apple kicked off the event by announcing a new 17" MacBook Pro, which was promoted as the "world's thinnest 17" notebook," as it's just 0.98 inches thick and weighs only 6.6 pounds.  The notebook promises 1920 x 1200 resolution and a new battery technology that is able to increase battery life to about eight hours during a single battery charge.  

The new MacBook Pro will have a Core 2 Duo processor -- 2.66 GHz -- 4GB DDR3 RAM, 320GB HDD, and NVIDIA GPUs, using a 9400M and 9600M GT.  In addition, it offers 3 USB 2.0 ports, FireWire 800, express card, glass trackpad, and a mini display port.  

Apple believes the eight-hour battery is the most innovative new feature of the laptop, as it's the longest battery life ever for an Apple product, with the company able to increase battery life while keeping the size of the laptop small.

Pricing for the latest Apple laptop will start at $2,799.  Apple expects to begin shipping the laptop later this month.

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